The U.S. has established an “interagency team” to further study “unidentified aerial objects,” after detecting and shooting down several in recent weeks, White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby announced Monday.
“The president, through his national security advisor, has today directed an interagency team to study the broader policy implications for detection, analysis, and disposition of unidentified aerial objects that pose either safety or security risks,” Kirby said at a White House press conference.
Biden also “directed the secretary of state, the secretary of defense, and the director of national intelligence to engage with their relevant counterparts to share information and to try to gain their perspectives” and “instructed the Intelligence Community to take a broad look at the phenomenon of unidentified aerial objects,” Kirby added. (RELATED: ‘Sank To The Bottom Of The Atlantic’: Kirby Says He Doesn’t Know When All Chinese Spy Balloon Debris Will Be Recovered)
On Feb. 4, the Air Force downed a Chinese spy balloon off the coast of South Carolina after it had spent the previous week floating across the continental United States. Biden’s military advisers suggested that firing on the balloon when it was over the water would be the safest way to destroy it, and divers have not yet recovered all the balloon materials that sank to the “bottom of the Atlantic,” Kirby said.
“They were able to take things off the surface … some of the balloon fabric,” he added. “They have been able to recover some, not all, of the payload that sank to the bottom of the Atlantic. It’s in about 45 feet of water. Weather conditions are pretty tough off the coast right now.”
Military aircraft shot three more objects out of the sky after the Chinese balloon — one over Alaska, one over Canada and one over Lake Huron. The U.S. has not located the debris from any of these objects and does not know where they came from, and what they were, Kirby said.