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Iran Press TV

Russian military intercepts US B-52 strategic bomber over Black Sea

Iran Press TV

Friday, 28 August 2020 11:04 PM

Russia has intercepted a US B-52 strategic bomber as it was heading toward Russian airspace over the Black Sea, the Russian Defense Ministry says.

The ministry said that late on Friday night Russian air defense control systems picked up an intruder aircraft on radar approaching the Russian border over the neutral waters of the Black Sea.

It added that two Russian Su-27 fighters were scrambled from the Southern Military District's air defense forces "to identify the air target and prevent violation of the Russian state border."

The two Russian warplanes identified the approaching aircraft as a US Boeing B-52 Stratofortress long-range subsonic strategic bomber, before forcing it to turn away from the Russian border, it further said.

"The entire flight of Russian fighters Su-27 was conducted strictly in accordance with international rules for the use of airspace," the Russian Defense Ministry added.

Earlier on Friday, Russia's National Defense Management Center said in a statement that a Russian Su-27 fighter jet was scrambled to ward off a US Air Force RC-135 reconnaissance plane over the Black Sea.

"After the US reconnaissance plane moved away from Russia's state border, the Russian fighter safely returned to its home airfield," the center added, stressing that entire interception process occurred "in strict compliance with the international rules of using the airspace."

For the past several weeks, Russian airspace control systems have been detecting numerous aircraft heading toward the Russian border over the neutral waters of the Black Sea, according to Russia's Sputnik news agency.

American bombers and spy planes, as well as NATO aircraft, have frequently been detected near Russia's borders.

The provocative flights have particularly increased in frequency since 2014, when the then-Ukrainian territory of Crimea joined Russia following a referendum and when a military conflict erupted in eastern Ukraine.

Russia has repeatedly expressed concern about the increasing activities of the US-led NATO forces near its western borders.

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