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US heavy drone spotted over Black Sea — source

Russia has spotted a US Global Hawk drone over the Black Sea

MOSCOW, May 12. /TASS/. Russia’s monitoring means spotted a US heavy drone RQ-4 Global Hawk over the Black Sea on Friday, a military-diplomatic source told TASS.

"This time Russian monitoring means have detected not a Poseidon patrol plane of the US Navy, but a US strategic reconnaissance drone Global Hawk, which was flying towards the Russian border at a high altitude," the source said. He did not specify if US drones made such flights often, but added that "they do that regularly."

TASS has no official confirmation.

Earlier, on May 9 a US reconnaissance plane P8A Poseidon was intercepted by a Sukhoi-30 jet of Russia’s Aerospace Force over the Black Sea on the way towards the Russian border. As a result of maneuvers by the Russian pilot the US pilot changed course and flew away.

Global Hawk is a US strategic drone. Its takeoff mass is 15 tonnes and wingspan, 40 meters. According to the manufacturer Northrop Grumman the drone carrying a payload of more than 1,300 kilograms can stay in flight for 30 hours at a high altitude. It is equipped with a high resolution camera, an infrared sensor and a radar capable of tracking moving objects.