'Russia's unprovoked attack on Ukrainian naval vessels in the Black Sea near the Kerch Strait is a unsafe escalation in a pattern of increasingly provocative and threatening activity, ' the Pentagon said in a statement.
The flight was conducted after Russian Federation had seized three Ukrainian naval vessels off Crimea.
In this case, the Ukrainian military requested a flight and the USA agreed to conduct it over an uncontested portion of Ukraine territory, according to Eric Pahon, a Pentagon spokesman.
"The timing of this flight is meant to reaffirm USA commitment to Ukraine and other partner nations", the Pentagon said. The observation flight was requested under the Open Skies Treaty by the Arms Control Directorate of the Ukrainian General Staff.
'Today, November 25, the ships of the Ukrainian Navy with two armored gunboats and a sea mule tugboat have been carrying out a scheduled transition from Odesa port to Mariupol port in the Sea of Azov.
Russia, a signatory to the treaty, would have to approve a normal flight as part of a larger package that also includes the proposed flights of all 34 parties to the treaty.
Pahon said the plane had a 17-member crew from the 55th Wing based at Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska. The Open Skies is an observation aircraft used for treaty support enhancing global peace, stability and cooperative security. The guided-missile destroyer USS McCambell conducted the operation, the first in this area since the Cold War, Wednesday, challenging Russia near the headquarters of the Russian Navy's Pacific Fleet.
The US military has requested the State Department to notify Turkey of possible plans to sail a warship into the Black Sea, CNN reported.
'The United States seeks a better relationship with Russian Federation, but this can not happen while its unlawful and destabilizing actions continue in Ukraine and elsewhere'.