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USN shines a light on laser incident in Pacific

2nd March 2020 - 09:30 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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The US Navy claimed on 28 February that one of its maritime patrol aircraft has been targeted by a laser fired from a Chinese destroyer.

The incident on 17 February, involving a USN P-8A Poseidon and People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) Type 052D destroyer Hohhot, occurred while the aircraft was flying in airspace ‘above international waters approximately 380 miles [608km] west of Guam,’ the USN announced in a statement.

An onboard sensor on the P-8A picked up the sensor, which was invisible to the naked eye.

The USN protested that the action by Hohhot contravened the Code for Unplanned Encounters at Sea (CUES), which ‘specifically addresses the use of lasers that could cause harm to personnel or damage to equipment’.

It also claimed that the destroyer’s actions were ‘inconsistent’ with an MoU between the US DoD and the Chinese ministry ‘regarding rules of behaviour for safety of air and maritime encounters’.

The Shephard News Team

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