US and Canadian fighter jets have intercepted a pair of Russian bombers in international airspace off the coast of Alaska, the North American Aerospace Defence Command said.

Two raptor stealth fighter jets and two Canadian CF-18 Hornet fighters identified and intercepted the long-range, nuclear-capable Russian Tu-95 Bear bombers north of Alaska over the Beaufort Sea on Thursday morning, Norad said in a statement.

The bombers had entered Alaskan and Canadian Air Defence Identification zones, which extend approximately 200 miles (321km) off Alaska’s west coast.

Both the US and Canada expect aircraft entering the area to positively identify themselves in the interest of national security.

READ  Two sisters drown in hotel pool on Greek island of Rhodes | World News, Reports

It marked the second time this month that Russian aircraft were observed in the area.

READ  Sole survivor of doomed boat says ships 'ran away' as migrants starved to death | World News, Reports

Two Tu-142 Russian maritime reconnaissance anti-submarine warfare aircraft entered the zone west of Alaska on 1 August, but were not intercepted at the time, Norad said.

The Russian planes did not enter US or Canadian sovereign territory in either incident, the statement added.

Norad uses a layered defence network of radars, satellites and fighter aircraft to identify aircraft and determine the appropriate response.

“Norads top priority is defending Canada and the United States. Norad operators identified and intercepted the Russian aircraft flying near our nations,” said General Terrence J. O’Shaughnessy, Norad commander.

Pic: NORAD
Image:
The bombers had entered Alaskan and Canadian Air Defence Identification zones

“Whether responding to violators of restricted airspace domestically or identifying and intercepting foreign military aircraft, Norad is on alert 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.”

READ  Lil Nas X: Old Town Road breaks records in US for longest-reigning No 1 | Ents & Arts News, Reports

The latest intercept comes at a complex time in US-Russian relations.

US President Donald Trump has expressed his desire to improve ties with Moscow, but the two countries have clashed over several geopolitical issues including the 2016 election interference and the attempted poisoning of an alleged Russian spy in the UK.

Loading...

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here