RAF Typhoons monitored two Russian patrol aircraft approaching UK airspace
RAF Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) Typhoon fighter aircraft scrambled from RAF Lossiemouth, with an RAF Voyager from RAF Brize Norton, to monitor two Russian Bear maritime patrol aircraft approaching UK airspace.
Meanwhile Typhoons deployed on NATO Baltic Air Policing also scrambled from Amari airbase to intercept a Russian Bear bomber and two Flanker fighter aircraft flying close to Estonian airspace.
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said:
“Every day certain states are determined to push international norms and to test the UK’s resolve. The threats to the international rules based system are on many fronts. The RAF is well equipped to stand sentry alongside our allies on the UK’s and Europe’s borders. I am grateful they are there 24/7 to uphold the UK’s commitment to our security.”
The QRA launch from RAF Lossiemouth took place after the two Russian patrol aircraft flew close to the international airspace of the UK’s fellow NATO Allies. A co-ordinated response allowed Allies to monitor the aircraft until the RAF intercepted them.
The UK fighters escorted them from the UK’s area of interest and ensured that they did not enter either UK sovereign airspace. The intercept and monitoring was completed in international airspace throughout and conducted in a safe and professional manner.
The RAF routinely identify, intercept and escort Russian aircraft that transit international airspace. Russian aircraft frequently attempt to test NATO’s level of readiness, as well as conduct intelligence-gathering missions. The rapid reaction of the RAF and by NATO allies serves as a reminder of NATO’s cohesion and its ability to react.
In the UK, the RAF Typhoon and Voyager aircraft are held at a state of readiness every day, supported by engineering and airspace management personnel. [end] ———-