On Saturday, November 10, a US RQ-4A Global Hawk surveillance unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) flew for several hours along the demarcation line in the Donbas, Interfax-Ukraine reported, citing aircraft tracking data.
The long-range American reconnaissance plane reportedly took off at the Sigonella air base in Sicily and spent roughly eight hours moving along the demarcation line in the Donbas. It made its observations ahead of the illegitimate “elections” to be held in the self-declared Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics on Sunday.
During its flight over Donbas airspace, on several occasions the drone came within 40-60 km of Russia’s Belgorod, Voronezh and Rostov provinces that border with Ukraine. At the time, the reconnaissance plane was over the Novopskov region of Ukraine’s Luhansk province.
En route to the Donbas, the American drone flew through the airspace of Greece, Bulgaria and Romania.
According to open sources, the RQ-4A Global Hawk is equipped with a high resolution camera, an infrared sensor and a radar for monitoring moving objects, and is designed for strategic reconnaissance up to 300 km into enemy territory.
At high altitudes the Global Hawk can survey large territories and observe specific targets at high resolution and transmit the data back to command in real-time through satellites. It has a flight mass of 15 tons, a wingspan of nearly 40 m, and an endurance of 30 hours at an altitude of up to 18,000 m.
In recent times the American surveillance UAV has made regular flights near the Donbas and the Russian border.