A Russian military fighter chased off a NATO jet as it tried to escort Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu’s plane above the Baltic Sea. A NATO fighter jet has approached a Russian plane carrying the defense minister but was chased away by the Russian escort jet.
The Baltic Sea has become an area of rising tensions between Moscow and the Western military alliance. Earlier this month, Russia scrambled a fighter jet to intercept a nuclear-capable U.S. B-52 strategic bomber it said was flying over the Baltic, in an incident that had echoes of the Cold War.
A NATO F-16 neared the state liner carrying Russia’s top state defense official on Wednesday. As per the NATO’s statement, the Russian planes did not identify themselves. In the statement they also added, When NATO aircraft intercept a plane they identify it visually, maintaining a safe distance at all times. Once complete, NATO jets break away.
Russian politicians called the episode the latest in a string of “provocations,” a day after the Russian defense ministry said an RC-135 U.S. reconnaissance plane had swerved dangerously near a Russian fighter jet over the Baltic and that another RC-135 had been intercepted. The Russian’s however accused the U.S. aircraft of turning abruptly and causing the dangerous pass.