Watch: Moment Chinese ‘spy balloon’ is shot down over Atlantic Ocean
The White House says that Joe Biden ordered that a new high-altitude “object” that appeared in the skies above Alaskan waters to be shot down by US fighters.
John Kirby, NSC Coordinator for Strategic Communications, told a Friday briefing that the object was floating above US territory at 40,000ft and was a “reasonable threat” to the safety of civilian air traffic.
Mr Kirby said the “object” was the size of a “small car” and “much, much smaller” than the spy balloon shot down last week.
Earlier, the “intact” payload from the Chinese spy balloon has been found in the waters off South Carolina, officials told Fox News.
The payload, which is reportedly the size of a bus, has been in the Atlantic Ocean since it was shot down by US military fighter jets last weekend.
Bad weather could delay the recovery of the payload with strong winds of up to 35mph in the region.
Debris recovered so far has been taken to the FBI lab in Quantico, Virginia, for analysis.
To date, US intelligence has revealed that the balloon, which spent eight days over US airspace, is “part of a larger Chinese surveillance balloon program” – something which Beijing continues to deny.
Nato secretary general Jens Stoltenberg said that the balloon incident “confirms a pattern of Chinese behaviour” using “different types of intelligence and surveillance platforms” around the world.
verything we know about the mysterious ‘object’ shot down by US warplanes in Alaska
The encounter came less than a week after US forces shot down a suspected Chinese spy balloon that had seized national headlines as it floated across the country.
Graeme Massie11 February 2023 00:54
Biden reacts to action against ‘object’ over Alaska
Joe Biden was asked to comment on the “object” that the US military shot down over Alaska as he waited on the South Lawn of the White House for Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.
Mr Biden told reporters that “it was a success”, according to CNN.
Graeme Massie10 February 2023 23:52
Canadian PM says he was briefed on US shooting down ‘object’
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took to Twitter to say that he was briefed on US plans to shoot down an “object” hovering over Alaskan waters on Friday.
“This afternoon, an object that violated American airspace was brought down. I was briefed on the matter and supported the decision to take action. Our military and intelligence services will always work together, including through @NORADCommand, to keep people safe, “ Mr Trudeau tweeted.
This afternoon, an object that violated American airspace was brought down. I was briefed on the matter and supported the decision to take action. Our military and intelligence services will always work together, including through @NORADCommand, to keep people safe.
— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) February 10, 2023
Graeme Massie10 February 2023 23:23
Why Biden ordered ‘object’ shot down over Alaska so quickly
The ‘object’ travelling at 40,000 feet above Alaska posed a greater threat to civilian air traffic than the espionage airship that floated 20,000 feet higher in the atmosphere.
Graeme Massie10 February 2023 22:32
Military aircraft flying in area near Prudhoe Bay
Graeme Massie10 February 2023 21:55
Pentagon gives details on shooting down of new ‘object’
Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Brig Gen Pat Ryder said that an F-22 fighter jet out of Elmendorf Air Force Base in Anchorage, Alaska used a sidewinder missile to take the “object” down.
”No indication at this time that it was manoeuvrable. It entered US airspace and we took it down,” he told a Friday press conference.
“The important thing to understand here is that any time we detect anything we observe it and then take appropriate action. In this particular case, it was operating at an altitude that posed a reasonable threat to civilian air traffic and the president decided to take it down.”
Graeme Massie10 February 2023 20:55
Department of Defense now holding media briefing
Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Brig Gen Pat Ryder now holding a briefing.
Graeme Massie10 February 2023 20:16
White House confirms US fighter jets have shot down a new ‘object’ over Alaska
The White House has confirmed that Joe Biden has ordered US fighter jets to shoot down a new high-altitude object flying at around 40,000 ft above Alaskan waters.
Graeme Massie10 February 2023 19:33
US set to sanction Chinese companies linked to balloon
The US is set to add Chinese companies linked to the spy balloon to its export blacklist, people familiar with the situation have told Bloomberg.
It comes as the payload of the balloon has been located in the waters off South Carolina and is set to be retrieved by the FBI.
Graeme Massie10 February 2023 19:29
Pentagon set to give balloon update at 2pm ET
Brig Gen Pat Ryder is expected to give the latest details on the recovery effort.
Graeme Massie10 February 2023 19:02