Russia intercepts two US military jets over Baltic Sea

AFP , Tuesday 23 May 2023

Russia said Tuesday it had scrambled an Su-27 fighter jet to "prevent violations of the state border" by two US Air Force strategic bombers flying over the Baltic Sea.

US Air Force MQ-9 drone approached by Russian SU-27 aircraft
File Photo: This handout image taken from video released by US European Command (USEUCOM) on March 16, 2023, shows onboard footage from a US Air Force MQ-9 drone as it is approached the first time by a Russian SU-27 aircraft jettisoning fuel, over The Black Sea on March 14, 2023. AFP


"After removing the foreign military aircraft from the Russian state border, the Russian fighter went back to its air base," the Russian defense ministry said.

The army prevented the violation of the border, the statement said, adding that "the flight of the Russian fighter was carried out in strict accordance with international rules for the use of airspace."

Pentagon spokesman Brigadier General Pat Ryder confirmed that US aircraft were intercepted by Russia, saying the B-1 bombers were taking part in a "long-planned exercise in Europe."

It is the latest in a series of similar incidents.

Just over a week ago, Russia said two aircraft, one German and one French, were intercepted attempting to "violate" its airspace.

Mid-April, Russia dispatched a fighter jet to escort a German naval aircraft over the Baltic Sea.

In March, an American drone crashed after colliding with a Russian jet over the Black Sea.

Russia's defense ministry said it had scrambled jets after detecting a US drone over the Black Sea, but denied causing the crash, saying the aircraft had lost control.

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