4 NATO Jets Trail 2 Russian Bombers Over Arctic, Atlantic

From RIA Novosti:  Two Russian Tu-160 Blackjack strategic bombers that carried out a routine patrol mission over the Arctic and Atlantic Oceans were shadowed by four NATO fighters, the Defense Ministry said on Friday.

Spokesman Lt. Col. Vladimir Drik said the bombers spent about 11 hours in the air on Thursday and were "accompanied" by two NATO F-16 Fighting Falcons of the Norwegian Air Force and two RAF Tornados.

This is thought to be the first time Russian strategic bombers have been followed by such a large number of NATO jets.

A similar patrol mission on September 29, 2009, was shadowed by an F-22 Raptor, reportedly the first time the world’s only fifth-generation fighter aircraft, which uses stealth technology, was sent out to keep an eye on Russian planes.  (photo: RIA Novosti)

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