Another unidentified object that the US military claims was flying close to key military facilities and might have been used for surveillance was shot down.
President Biden gave the command to fire the object over Lake Huron in Michigan at 2:42 p.m. local time on Sunday, February 12.
In response to worries that its altitude and flight path could harm civilian aircraft, a US F-16 jet launched a missile at roughly 20,000 feet.
It is the fourth incident in just over a week and the third in as many days – after objects were shot down in Alaska and Canada on Friday and Saturday.
A Pentagon officials have reportedly described the latest object as having “an octagonal structure with strings hanging off but no discernible payload”.
On Friday 4 February, the US military downed a suspected Chinese spy balloon off the Carolina coast after it said had traversed sensitive military sites across North America.
On Friday 10 Friday, a second “car-sized” object was shot down over sea ice near Deadhorse, Alaska.
On Saturday 11 February, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau ordered a US warplane to shoot down a third unidentified object that was flying high over the northern Canadian territory of Yukon.
On Sunday 12 February, a fourth unidentified object was shot down with a missile by US fighter jets over Lake Huron on the US-Canada border.
Authorities restricted airspace over the lake, near the Canadian border, before both US and Canadian jets were sent to intercept it.
Jets were also scrambled on Saturday after radar detected an object over Montana, but it could not be located and it was thought it could be an error.
However, the signal was picked up again by North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) on Sunday, the Pentagon said.
“Based on its flight path and data we can reasonably connect this object to the radar signal picked up over Montana, which flew in proximity to sensitive DOD [Department of Defense] sites,” said a statement.
“We did not assess it to be a kinetic military threat to anything on the ground, but assess it was a safety flight hazard and a threat due to its potential surveillance capabilities.”
US Air Force general Glen VanHerck admitted he did not know what the last three objects shot down were or how they stay aloft.
However, he told reporters they were not the same as the Chinese “spy” balloon downed near South Carolina a week ago.
“We’re calling them objects, not balloons, for a reason,” he said – also refusing to rule out any explanation when asked if they could be extra-terrestrial.