Two Spanish F-18 fighter jet participating in the NATO mission to patrol the airspace of the Baltic States have intercepted and escorted a Russian bomber su-24 flying from Kaliningrad over international waters of the Baltic sea near the border of Estonia, writes the Spanish newspaper La Vanguardia , citing the General staff of the defense Ministry of Spain.
Fighters raised for support of the aircraft from the airbase “Amari” in Estonia, participate in the NATO mission “Baltic air patrol”, which aims to guarantee the sovereignty and integrity of the three Baltic republics – Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, which lack air defense.
Control system mission recorded an unidentified aircraft from Kaliningrad, not contacted with air traffic controllers and flying near the border line of the territorial waters of Latvia in the direction of Estonia. It clarifies the website Infodefensa.comthe aircraft was detected by radars of the Lithuanian centre movement in the town of Karmėlava.
Base “Amari” was raised by two F-18 fighter jet. “We couldn’t believe that a band Ambar would be the first real participants in this mission,” said pilots involved in the support.
Intercepted plane was a Russian su-24 tactical bomber, NATO reporting – Fencer (“Swordsman”), intended for drawing is rocket-bombing attacks in simple and adverse weather conditions. F-18 identified, photographed the bomber and followed him until he received orders to return to base.
“Amari” – military airport in Harju County Estonia. In April 2014, was placed by four fighters of the NATO.
Lithuanian intelligence agencies in early April 2017 published an assessment of threats to the national security of the country, saying the number of one of them Russian-Belarusian exercises “West-2017″.
At the end of April the Minister of defence of the Russian Federation General of the army Sergei Shoigu said that the activities of the “police” aircraft of the NATO mission to patrol the Baltic airspace has actually become an integral part of “the so-called zone access restrictions, covering Kaliningrad oblast and the Eastern part of the Baltic sea” (quoted by TASS). “We consider these actions of NATO as a demonstration of the power of promoting their interests,” he added.
The threat against Russia from NATO was discussed in the updated national security strategy of the Russian Federation, approved by Russian President Vladimir Putin on 31 December 2015.