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RAF Typhoons intercept Russian planes flying near Nato airspace twice in 24 hours

British jets scramble as Russian planes get close to Swedish airspace

Holly Hales
Friday 09 June 2023 21:41 BST
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The initial incident unfolded when the British jets took off from the Amari airbase in Estonia
The initial incident unfolded when the British jets took off from the Amari airbase in Estonia (RAF)

RAF Typhoons have intercepted Russian planes flying close to Nato member airspace twice in the past 24 hours.

The initial incident unfolded when the British jets took off from the Amari airbase in Estonia on Thursday evening.

They were accompanied by Swedish Air Force Gripens which scrambled to intercept a Russian Air Force IL-20 ‘COOT’ A and Su-27 ‘FLANKER’ B flying close to Nato and Swedish airspace, the RAF said.

The initial incident unfolded when the British jets took off from the Amari airbase in Estonia (RAF)

Russian aircraft were not complying with international norms by failing to communicate with the relevant flight information, a statement from the Royal Air Force continued.

However, the RAF confirmed the planes remained in international airspace and flew in a “professional manner”.

Typhoons were again scrambled to intercept one AN12 ‘CUB’ and one AN72 ‘COALER’ flying south from mainland Russia towards the Kaliningrad Oblast on Friday morning.

The RAF planes also intercepted two Tupolev Tu-22M ‘BACKFIRES’ and two Su-30 SM FLANKER H, also flying south from mainland Russia over the Gulf of Finland and the Baltic Sea.

Typhoons were again scrambled on Friday morning to intercept one AN12 ‘CUB’ and one AN72 ‘COALER’ flying south from mainland Russia towards the Kaliningrad Oblast (RAF)

One of the pilots involved in the scramble told the airforce how the incident unfolded.

“Although there is an apparent increase in regional activity, these intercepts remain normal jogging for us and we are ready to respond to any task that may pose a threat to regional security,” he said in a statement.

Both Swedish and British planes were involved in the incident on Thursday (RAF)

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said the incidents were proof of how countries can work together to patrol each other’s regions.

“These intercepts are a stark reminder that the RAF is always ready to defend our skies and those of our allies,” he said.

“The coordinated action by several air forces serves as a clear demonstration of the value of our international alliances.”

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