An unarmed Iranian drone buzzed an American Super Hornet fighter jet as it circled an aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf, Defense Department officials said on Tuesday.
A statement released by the military’s Central Command said that despite repeated radio calls demanding that Iran keep the drone clear of American flight operations in the vicinity of the aircraft carrier Nimitz, the Iranian vehicle came within 100 feet of the fighter jet, which had to swerve to avoid a collision.
At the time of the incident, the jet had been in a holding pattern and was planning to land on the carrier, the statement said.
“The dangerous maneuver created a collision hazard and is not in keeping with international maritime customs and laws,” the statement said. The American military said this was the 13th “unsafe” or “unprofessional” interaction between American and Iranian maritime forces this year.