The Pentagon released this Wednesday a photo taken by an American fighter-bomber of the Chinese spy balloon which the United States shot down earlier this month after passing through its territory.
The snapshot was taken on February 3, a day before the balloon was shot down off South Carolina, after spending days hovering over the continental United States.
The photo is taken from above, since the fighter flew over the balland you can see the shadow of the plane on the device.
The pilot took it from the cockpit of the fighter while the balloon was somewhere in the center of the country.
The photo had been broadcast in the last hours by the television channel CNN and a website called Dragon Lady todaywhose name refers to the nickname given to American U-2 fighters.
In fact, the deputy spokeswoman for the United States Department of Defense, Sabrina Singhad been questioned during her press conference about the authenticity of the photo published by Dragon Lady today and had pointed out that it is real.
The Chinese spy balloon was spotted in late January in US airspace and it was shot down over Atlantic waters on 4 February. It had been flying over several regions of the country for days, such as the state of Montana (northwest), where one of the three existing nuclear missile silo fields in the United States is located.
The Chinese regime claimed the balloon entered US airspace by mistakenly deviating from its path and claimed it was being used for meteorological purposes and not for espionage, which was denied by Washington.
In addition to the spy balloon, the United States this month shot down three other flying objects on its territory and in Canada, the origin of which is under investigation by the American and Canadian authorities.
The discovery of the Chinese spy balloon has reignited tensions between the United States and China, and even led to the suspension of a trip to Beijing that the Secretary of State was planning to make, Anthony Blink.
The U-2 is an American high-altitude spy plane in service since the 1950s.
The Pentagon announced last Friday that Navy ships and submersibles had completed the recovery of the massive balloon and its payload, which crashed into the Atlantic Ocean. The payload was recovered from the ocean floor and is being analyzed by the FBI.Pentagon spokeswoman Sabrina Singh said Wednesday.
The shooting led to three other smaller objects also being shot down by Air Force planes in eight days: one over Alaska, one over Canada and one over Lake Huron. The search for Alaska and Lake Huron artifacts is complete.
(With information from EFE)