Russian Fighters Scrambled 14 Times to Intercept Foreign Aircraft in Past Week
Russia's jets have intercepted 14 foreign spy planes near its national borders in a week, the Russian Defense Ministry said in its weekly infographics published by the Krasnaya Zvezda paper on Friday.
The paper estimated that US RC-135 planes and Global Hawk drones had been involved in ten reconnaissance missions; four were conducted by Norwegian P-3 Orions, and three by Swedish Air Force’s Gulfstream intelligence planes.
Planes of British and French air forces were each spotted twice by Russian air defense agencies. Portuguese and Japanese aircraft also made appearances close to Russia’s external frontiers.
It should be noted that the number of air incidents involving Russian and NATO planes has increased in the past years after the US-led alliance ratcheted up its presence on Russia’s western border in 2014.
On Wednesday, June 21, Poland’s F-16 Viper fighter intercepted a Russian Tu-154 VIP aircraft carrying Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. The Polish fighter jet had to retreat after a fully armed Su-27 Flanker jet zoomed in and displayed its weapons.
Undoubtedly, these NATO actions exacerbate international tension and demonstrate unfriendly behavior.