The US military, under orders from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, shot down an unidentified object flying over Canada on Saturday – the third aerial object shot down over North America in the past week, although it is not clear whether the latest incident is suspected Chinese espionage. Whether or not the balloon was attached, it was destroyed off the coast of South Carolina on 4 February.
Pentagon spokesman Air Force Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder briefs reporters at the Pentagon in Washington, … [+] Friday, February 10, 2023. (AP Photo/J Scott Applewhite)
Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved
Trudeau ordered the removal of the unidentified object “that violated Canadian airspace” around 3:40 p.m. Saturday, he announced in a tweet.
Canadian Defense Minister Anita Anand said in a press release that in an operation coordinated by the North American Aerospace Defense Command, NORAD, a US F-22 intercepted the object while flying over the Yukon about 100 miles from the US-Canadian border. Shot down. conference on Saturday.
Anand said the cylindrical object, which was flying at an altitude of about 40,000 feet when it was shot down, is “likely” similar to the suspected Chinese spy balloon shot down off the coast of South Carolina, but smaller in size Is.
Pentagon officials said President Joe Biden learned about the object on Friday and spoke to Trudeau about it on Saturday, before Biden authorized the removal out of “an abundance of caution”, the White House said. Said.
NORAD sent two F-22s from Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Alaska to monitor the object on Friday as it flew over Alaskan airspace, Pentagon press secretary Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder said.
The Canadian military is working to “recover and analyze the wreckage of the object,” Trudeau said, while the FBI and Royal Canadian Mounted Police are also investigating its source.
“This was the first time a NORAD mission downed an aerial object,” Anand said. “The importance of this moment should not be underestimated.”
Ryder said Saturday’s incident in Canada came after the US military shot down another unidentified flying object over Alaska on Friday afternoon that entered US airspace sometime on Thursday. The military had limited information about the object, which was “about the size of a small car,” Ryder said, but he did not indicate whether it was linked to the suspected Chinese spy balloon. Intelligence officials believe the two ships shot down over Alaska and Canada were balloons, Sen. Chuck Schumer (DN.Y.) said Sunday. Recovery operations were underway on Saturday near Deadhorse, Alaska, but were compromised by winter weather conditions. On February 4, the US shot down a suspected Chinese spy balloon that traveled through the Aleutian Islands in Alaska, through Montana and into the US east before reaching the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina – an event that Tensions have escalated further with the Chinese government, which said on Thursday that the takedown “seriously violates international practice and sets a bad precedent.”
Officials said all three objects were shot down by an AIM-9X missile.
NORAD and US Northern Command later Saturday sent fighter jets to monitor a “radar anomaly” over Montana that caused a temporary airspace closure, but ultimately did not identify an object, the agencies said in a statement.
Everything We Know About the ‘High-Altitude Object’ Shot Over Alaska (Forbes)
Pentagon says US shot down ‘threat’ Alaskan object (Forbes)
US shoots down suspected Chinese spy balloon over Atlantic (Forbes)