September 4, 1954 Incident (Sea of Japan) : Note from the American Embassy at Moscow to the Soviet Foreign Ministry, September 5, 1954(1)

A U. S. Navy P2V aircraft was attacked without warning by two MIG-type aircraft with Soviet markings at 1818 September 4 (local time). This attack took place over the international high seas approximately one hundred miles east of Vladivostok and forty-four miles from the Siberian coast(2). Each Soviet aircraft made one firing run on the U. S. Navy aircraft and disappeared towards the Siberian coast. As a result of this unwarranted and hostile attack, the U. S. Navy aircraft was destroyed. To this hour all survivors have not been recovered.

The U. S. Government protests this wanton and unprovoked attack on a U. S. Navy aircraft engaged on a peaceful mission over the high seas. The U. S. Government requests that measures be taken to subject those responsible to immediate and appropriate punishment. The U. S. Government reserves all rights to claim damages for loss of property and lives and for other circumstances resulting from this illegal attack by Soviet aircraft.

(1) Department of State Bulletin, Sept. 13, 1954, p. 364. Back

(2) The U.S. Navy stated on Sept. 6, 1954, that the incident occurred about 120 to 125 miles southeast of Vladivostok. [Footnote in original.] Back

American Foreign Policy 1950-1955
Basic Documents Volumes I and II
Department of State Publication 6446
General Foreign Policy Series 117
Washington, DC : U.S. Government Printing Office, 1957

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