The US does not shoot down the balloon that China rules out is a spy 2:20
The Pentagon said late Friday that there is another suspected Chinese spy balloon transiting Latin America.
Brigadier General Patrick Ryder, a Pentagon spokesman, said in a statement to CNN: “We are seeing reports of a balloon transiting Latin America.
We now assess that it is another Chinese surveillance balloon.”
An alleged spy balloon from China flies over the United States: What is it?
What are you looking for?
Where would it go?
It's unclear exactly where in Latin America the balloon is, but a US official told CNN that it doesn't appear the balloon is currently headed for the United States.
An alleged spy balloon from China flies over the United States
A suspected Chinese high-altitude balloon floats over Billings, Montana, on Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2023. (Larry Mayer/The Billings Gazette via AP)
A suspected Chinese spy balloon is flying over United States territory, under close surveillance by the Defense Department, US officials said Thursday.
The revelation has sparked a new wave of tensions between Beijing and Washington, shortly before Secretary of State Antony Blinken's trip to China.
Ryder said the US government had been tracking the balloon -- which is as big as three buses -- for several days as it made its way over the north of the country, adding that it was "traveling at an altitude well above of commercial air traffic and does not present a physical or military threat to people on the ground.
"We confidently believe that this high-altitude surveillance balloon belongs to [the PRC]," the senior defense official said.
“Instances of this activity have been observed in recent years, even before this administration.”
While the balloon's current flight path takes it over "a number of sensitive sites," the official said it does not present a significant risk to intelligence gathering.
The balloon is assessed to have "limited additive value" from an intelligence-gathering perspective, the official added.