A Russian fighter jet struck the propeller of a US surveillance drone over the Black Sea on Tuesday in what a US spokeman called a "brazen violation of international law", forcing the US military to bring down the unmanned aerial vehicle. Russia's ambassador to the United States, Anatoly Antonov, called the incident a "provocation". Read our live blog for all the latest developments. All times are Paris time (GMT+1).
6:18am: US says Russian warplane strikes US drone over Black Sea
A Russian fighter jet struck the propeller of a US surveillance drone over the Black Sea on Tuesday, forcing the US military to bring down the unmanned aerial vehicle.
State Department spokesman Ned Price called the act a "brazen violation of international law". He said the US had summoned the Russian ambassador to lodge a protest while the US ambassador to Russia, Lynne Tracy, has made similar representations in Moscow.
But Russia insisted its warplanes didn't hit the MQ-9 Reaper drone. Instead, it said the drone maneuvered sharply and crashed into the water following an encounter with Russian fighter jets that had been scrambled to intercept it near Crimea.
The incident, which added to Russia-US tensions over Moscow's war in Ukraine, appeared to be the first time since the height of the Cold War that a US aircraft was brought down after an encounter with a Russian warplane.
4:08am: Moscow sees drone incident as a 'provocation'
Russia views the drone incident, which involved one of its Su-27 fighter jets over the Black Sea, as a "provocation", its ambassador to the United States, Anatoly Antonov, said in remarks published early on Wednesday.
"The American UAV deliberately and provocatively was moving towards Russian territory with transponders turned off," Antonov said in remarks posted on his embassy's website, referring to the drone as an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV).
"We view this incident as a provocation," Antonov told Russian agencies on Tuesday after being summoned by the US State Department.
11:19pm: White phosphorus munitions fired in eastern Ukraine, AFP reports
White phosphorus munitions were fired on Tuesday from Russian positions on an uninhabited area by the town of Chasiv Yar in eastern Ukraine, AFP journalists reported.
Two projectiles were fired five minutes apart at around 4:45pm on a road at the southern edge of Chasiv Yar leading to nearby Bakhmut, the centre of the longest and bloodiest battle of Russia's year-long invasion.
The whistling sound from the projectiles was followed by explosions caused by munitions that released small, burning balls of white phosphorus that slowly fell to the ground.
The balls set fire to the vegetation on both sides of the road on a surface equivalent to the size of a football pitch.
AFP was not able to confirm if the targeted site was a position held by Ukrainian forces, but a green truck with a white cross, a sign of Ukraine's army, was parked by a path in the burned area.
(FRANCE 24 with AFP, AP & Reuters)
Originally published on France24