A Russian Su-27 jet fighter came within 20 feet of a U.S. RC-135 reconnaissance aircraft over the Black Sea on Monday in Moscow’s latest military provocation involving dangerous aerial encounters. “On Jan. 25 an RC-135 aircraft flying a routine route in international airspace over the Black Sea was intercepted by a Russian Su-27 in an unsafe and unprofessional manner,” Navy Capt. Daniel Hernandez, chief spokesman for the U.S. European Command, told the Washington Free Beacon. “We are looking into the issue.”

Defense officials said the Su-27 flew alongside the RC-135, an electronic intelligence-gathering aircraft, and then performed what they said was an aggressive banking turn away from the intelligence jet. The thrust from the Su-27 “disturbed the controllability” of the RC-135, said one official familiar with details of the incident. A second official said the reconnaissance aircraft was flying 30 miles from the coast—well within international airspace and far away from any Russian territory—at the time of the encounter. FULL REPORT