In Show of Support, US Conducts Ukraine Fly-Over

In Show of Support, US Conducts Ukraine Fly-Over

"Today, the United States and Allies conducted an extraordinary flight under the Open Skies Treaty".

DTRA has pointed to valuable information gained from the Open Skies flights, including unclassified imagery gathered in March 2014 during a German-U.S. flight over Russia's border with Ukraine that helped prove Russian military activities in eastern Ukraine despite Moscow's denials.

Thursday's U.S. military flight comes a day after CNN reported the U.S. Navy is also preparing to sail a ship into the Black Sea in response to Russia's actions against Ukraine.

"They come here just like we go there", a USA official told ABC News at the time.

A U.S. Navy destroyer sailed through waters claimed by Russian Federation in the Sea of Japan on Wednesday, challenging Moscow's ownership of the area for the first time since the end of the Cold War.

U.S. ships can only be in the Black Sea for 21 days under the Montreux Convention, the broadcaster said. The most recent was the fast transport ship USNS Carson City, in September.

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It cited three USA officials it did not name as saying the move was a response to Russia's actions against Ukraine in the Kerch Strait, which connects the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov. Since then, Washington has sought to show its support for Ukraine while condemning Russian actions. "The timing of this flight is meant to reaffirm United States commitment to Ukraine and other partner nations".

"A wide audience of participants and the media were shown evidence of the militarization by Russia of occupied Crimea and the direct military aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine in the Kerch Strait area, which poses a serious threat to the entire Black Sea region", it said. He said the flight was requested by the arms control directorate of the Ukrainian General Staff.

Pahon said the plane had 17-member crew from the 55th Wing based at Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska.

The United States has begun making preparations to sail a warship into the Black Sea amid Russia-Ukraine tensions, CNN has reported.

Pahon said the observation plane left a base near Washington on November 30 and flew in Ukrainian airspace after a stop in Germany.

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