A South American nation revealed late on Saturday that it detected a possible Chinese spy balloon operating in its airspace last week.
The Colombian Air Force said in a statement that on Friday morning, “the National Air Defense System detected an object above 55,000 feet, which entered Colombian airspace in the northern sector of the country, moving at an average speed of 25 knots, identifying in it, characteristics similar to those of a balloon.”
“Through the Defense Systems, the Colombian Air Force followed the object until it left the airspace,” the statement continued.
The Colombians said that they were launching an investigation to determine the origin of the object, although they did not believe that it presented a risk to their security.
The news out of Colombia comes after the Pentagon said Friday that it had assessed the balloon was a Chinese spy balloon.
Floating in the sky of Cartagena, Colombia for more than a half hour. Moving slowly. Chinese balloon?? pic.twitter.com/GzQFcIDZuL
— Luz Marina Alvare (@alvarelm) February 3, 2023
“We are seeing reports of a balloon transiting Latin America,” Pentagon spokesperson Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder said. “We now assess it is another Chinese surveillance balloon.”
A balloon, potentially the same one discovered over the skies of Colombia, was filmed floating over Costa Rica.
Esteban Carranza, a lawyer from Costa Rica, posted a video of the balloon, writing, “the same type of balloon spotted in the US was visible all day in the Costa Rican sky.”
“I have to say, I was pretty excited as I initially thought I was seeing a UFO because the object was big, bright and absolutely still,” he told CNN. “I looked at the object for around 45 minutes from different locations, completely still, and a few hours later went back out again and it was still there, in the exact same place. Lots of people were looking at it from different parts of the city. Even though not a UFO, it was still very unusual and therefore an exciting experience.”
Here is a video I took from the street. @SilvaRecord
I initially did not think it was a balloon since the wind was around 45 knots and the object remained still for a long time. But yes, it was confirmed a balloon. pic.twitter.com/I60KGTkWjC
— UAP Costa Rica (@UAP_CR) February 3, 2023
The news comes after the U.S. military used an F-22 Raptor to take out a Chinese spy balloon off the coast of South Carolina using a single air-to-air A9X sidewinder missile that was fired at an altitude of approximately 58,000 feet. The decision to shoot down the spy balloon came after President Joe Biden allowed it to fly thousands of miles over the continental U.S. during the last several days.