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Passenger jet reduced altitude over Black Sea due to spy plane - Interfax

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By Reuters

MOSCOW – A passenger plane flying from Tel Aviv to Moscow was forced to change altitude over the Black Sea because a reconnaissance plane was in the area, Russia’s Interfax news agency cited an unnamed air traffic control source as saying on Saturday.

Russia’s state aviation authority declined to comment on the report, which said the incident happened on Friday when a spy plane crossed a civilian flight path. Moskovsky Komsomolets, a Russian tabloid, cited a source as saying the same thing.

The Interfax source said air traffic control told the passenger plane to lower its course by 500 metres (1,640 feet).

The news reports did not say which airline was operating the passenger plane, but Flightradar24 data showed that an Aeroflot flight from Tel Aviv to Moscow on Friday reduced its altitude for a short stretch over the Black Sea.

Russia’s Defence Ministry said on Friday it had scrambled fighter jets to escort two U.S. military reconnaissance planes over the Black Sea.

The U.S. Embassy in Moscow made no immediate comment about Saturday’s Interfax report.