On Monday, March 29, NATO fighters took to the air ten times to escort Russian bombers and fighters over the North Atlantic, North Sea, Black, and Baltic Seas.
This is stated in a statement on the Alliance website.
NATO, in connection with the latest interception incidents, announced “an unusual level of RF air activity.”
Overall, NATO aircraft intercepted six different groups of Russian military aircraft near Alliance airspace in less than six hours.
“The interception of several Russian aviation groups demonstrates the readiness and ability of NATO forces to guard the skies of the Allies 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year,” said Brigadier General Andrew Hansen, deputy chief of staff at Allied Air Command.
In the Far North, Norwegian F-16s took to the air after radars spotted two groups of Russian military aircraft flying off the coast of Norway. Norwegian jets intercepted two bombers, which continued to fly south over the North Sea, forcing Britain and Belgium to raise their Typhoon and F-16 aircraft, respectively. On the same day, Norwegian F-16s intercepted two Tu-160 Blackjack bombers.
NATO’s radars also detected three Russian military aircraft near Allied airspace over the Black Sea. Turkish, Romanian, and Bulgarian fighter planes took to the skies to track Russian planes until they left the area. Separately, an Italian fighter intercepted a Russian Il-38 naval patrol aircraft, accompanied by fighters.
Russian military aircraft often do not transmit a code indicating their position and altitude, do not submit a flight plan, or do not communicate with air traffic controllers, posing a potential risk to civilian aircraft, NATO notes.
The Alliance adds that on Monday none of the Russian aircraft violated the airspace of NATO countries.