The Russian Security Council Secretary and the former chief of Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) Nikolai Patrushev said on Wednesday that Russia will try to get the wreckage of an American MQ-9 drone that fell into the Black Sea in order to study it.
“I don’t know if we will be able to get it or not, but we need to do it ... And we will definitely look into it,” said Patrushev said on Russian state TV Rossiya 1.
“As for the drone, the Americans keep saying that they are not participating in hostilities. This is yet another confirmation that they are directly involved in these events, in the war,” he added.
Patrushev said Russia already counters such actions.
“We must defend our independence and sovereignty," he said.
Some more context: The US has not recovered the drone that was forced down by a Russian fighter jet over the Black Sea Tuesday, according to National Security Council communications coordinator John Kirby. He warned that he was "not sure we are going to be able to recover it."
"We did the best we could to minimize any intelligence value that might come from somebody else getting their hands on that drone," he added.
The Kremlin said relations between Russia and the US are at their “lowest point” and in a “deplorable state,” following the drone's downing.
Moscow pushed back, denying its fighter jets came "into contact" with the US drone.