A pair of UK's Typhoon fighters and French Mirage fighters scrambled to intercept Russian Tupolev Tu-160 strategic bombers as they flew over international waters.
UK has scrambled two Typhoon aircraft to monitor two Russian Blackjack bombers that flew near British airspace various French and British media reported Thursday.
"We can confirm that quick reaction alert Typhoon aircraft from RAF Lossiemouth and RAF Coningsby scrambled to monitor two Blackjack bombers while they were in the UK area of interest," a Royal Air Force spokesman said in a statement. "At no point did the Russian aircraft enter UK territorial airspace.” he added.
Separately, the French air force said two of its Mirage military aircraft escorted the two bombers down the French coast before handing over to Spanish military planes.
A French official said the incident was the fourth time Russian fighters had been intercepted on the French coast over the past two years, a period of tension between Russia and Western European countries related to the conflicts in Syria and Ukraine.
Russia’s Defense Ministry has confirmed that the flight of its bomber violated no international rules. He also expressed surprise that such attention was paid to a routine flight. "They flew over neutral waters in the Barents and the Norwegian seas, as well as in the Atlantic Ocean," Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen Igor Konashenkov said.
Russia may test the upgraded configuration of Tupolev Tu-160 strategic bomber in 2019, according to a report by TASS. "I believe that in 2019 this plane, upgraded and manufactured, will make its maiden flight," Aerospace Force commander Viktor Bondarev said Wednesday, when asked about the outlook for resuming the production of Tupolev-160
Russian first Tupolev Tu-160M modernized strategic bomber with about 60 per cent new components included will appear in 2021. The first deeply modernized Tu-160M will appear in 2021
Russia's modernized of Tu-160 strategic bomber, dubbed Tu-160M2, will be equipped with new Missiles and Kuznetsov NK-32 engine which will increase its range by 1000 kms. The country's Deputy Defense Minister Yuri Borisov told RIA Novosti today "There will be a spate of such missiles in terms of range and characteristics,"
Russian air force will purchase at least 50 new Tu-160M strategic bombers besides commencing production of the T-50 (PAK-FA) fighter by 2017. “In order to cover the expenses at least 50 aircraft of the type will be purchased, the Minister of Defense has made the decision to resume production of Tu-160M aircraft,” Commander-in-Chief of Russian air forces, Colonel-General Viktor Bondarev was quoted as saying by Interfax Thursday
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