According to a representative of Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, the Biden administration will brief the “Gang of Eight” next week about Chinese spy balloons circling the continental United States. After the balloon was found, several politicians, including House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, requested a “Gang of Eight” briefing.
“President Biden cannot remain silent about China’s blatant disdain for American sovereignty; This is unsustainable behavior that needs to be addressed. McCarthy posted a request for a Gang of Eight briefing on Twitter.
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Eight Republican and eight Democratic congressional leaders from the House and Senate form the “Gang of Eight,” which receives classified information from the executive branch.
Brigadier General Pat Ryder, a Pentagon spokesman, said during a briefing Thursday afternoon that the American government had discovered a high-altitude surveillance balloon over the Americas.
The US administration is “confirmed” the surveillance balloon is from the People’s Republic of China, a senior defense official said. The balloon was recently over Montana, according to the defense official, who added that the government considered shooting it down but decided against it because of the potential risks.
According to the person, President Biden was briefed on the situation and asked for a military option.
The collection of several assets, including an F-22, and a ground halt at Billings Airport were both mentioned in yesterday’s report, the official said. This is because we prepared some resources in case the decision was made to shoot it while it was over Montana.
“In order to clear the airspace around that potential location, we need to be sure that we are working in conjunction with civilian authorities. Our military superiors believed that despite the precautionary measures we had taken, the risk was not sufficiently reduced. We decided not to attempt the shot.
In a response to US government representatives on Friday, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman insisted that the balloon was a “civilian aircraft” being used for meteorological reasons that deviated from its intended course.
The airship originated in China. The representative explained that it was a civilian airship used for research, mostly meteorological research. The airship deviated from its intended course due to Westerly and its limited capabilities.
According to a US defense official, the first launch of the balloon was from mainland China. The Pentagon rejected claims that the item was a weather balloon that had deviated from its intended path. “It was intentional,” declared the top US official.
US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken cancels trip to China due to balloon discovery
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