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Updated September 12th, 2022 at 17:23 IST

US Navy rejects request to declassify UFO videos citing threat to national security

A US Navy official, in response to a request under the Freedom of Information Act, stated that the release of UFO videos would harm national security.

Harsh Vardhan
US
Image: Unsplash/Representative | Image:self
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The US Navy has rejected a request made under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to release videos of Unidentified Flying Objects (UFO) citing threats to national security. The request to release the videos of unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP), as referred to by the US military, was made by the government transparency site The Black Vault in April 2020 and the denial of release came two years after the first filing. 

Sharing the letter received from a Navy spokesperson, The Black Vault revealed last week that it has filed another appeal to release the videos denied. "While three UAP videos were released in the past, the facts specific to those three videos are unique in that those videos were initially released via unofficial channels before official release,” Gregory Cason, deputy director of the Navy's FOIA office wrote in the letter, according to The Black Vault.

“Those events were discussed extensively in the public domain; in fact, major news outlets conducted specials on these events. Given the amount of information in the public domain regarding these encounters, it was possible to release the files without further damage to national security", the letter further read. Notably, this comes just three months after the Pentagon testified over the UFO sightings and officially declassified two more videos shot by Navy pilots. In the testimony, two Pentagon officials revealed that the Navy pilots have reported over 140 UFO sightings since 2004.

The Black Vault's hunt for UFO videos

It was in 2017 when two UFO videos were released in the public domain, which created a buzz on the internet. In the following months, another video was released which, although lacking credibility, was confirmed by the US Navy later, further fuelling the demand for transparency. Speculating how many such videos might be stored in the US military's data, The Black Vault is demanding the release of all clips designated as UAPs.

It is worth noting that NASA announced in June this year that it is setting up an independent team that will be funded to conduct research on publicly available data on these unexplained sightings. "We are not shying away from reputational risk,” NASA official Thomas Zurbuchen said during a conference at the time. “Our strong belief is that the biggest challenge of these phenomena is that it's a data-poor field.”

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Published September 12th, 2022 at 17:23 IST

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