US Shoots Down Chinese Spy Balloon Over 'unacceptable' Violation: Pentagon Claims


US shoots down Chinese spy balloon over 'unacceptable' violation: Pentagon claims

Washington, Feb 5 (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 5th Feb, 2023 ) :A US fighter jet on Saturday shot down a Chinese spy balloon off the coast of South Carolina, the Pentagon claimed, over what it called Beijing's "unacceptable violation" of American sovereignty.

The craft spent several days flying over North America, ratcheting up tensions between Washington and Beijing, before it was targeted with a missile shot from an F-22 plane, Pentagon officials disclosed, falling into relatively shallow water just 47 feet (14 meters) deep.

US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin called the operation a "deliberate and lawful action" that came in response to China's "unacceptable violation of our sovereignty.

"Saturday afternoon was the military's first chance to take on the balloon "in a way that would not pose a threat to the safety of Americans," a senior defense official told reporters, while still allowing authorities to collect the fallen debris from US territorial waters.

In eyewitness video posted to social media, the balloon appeared to disintegrate in a white puff before its remnants dropped vertically into the ocean below.