Russian bombers flew off the Alaskan coast for a second time this week, coming within 35 miles of the U.S. mainland.
The two Tu-95 nuclear-capable bombers, which entered the U.S. military’s Air Defense Identification Zone, were detected by U.S. radar flying northeast of the Aleutian Islands.
Although remaining in international airspace, the Russian aircraft would have been asked to identify themselves once 200 nautical miles from the coastline.
The U.S. Air Force sent an E-3 Sentry early warning plane from Elemendorf Air Force Base in Anchorage to intercept the bombers and to confirm no other aircraft were present.
Reports indicate that the U.S. aircraft flew alongside the Tu-95’s for several hours before they turned back towards Russia.
In a similar incident just one evening prior on Monday, a pair of Russian bombers came within 100 miles of Alaska’s Kodiak Island.
Two F-22 stealth fighter jets and an E-3 Sentry early warning plane were scrambled by the U.S. Air Force to intercept the Russian aircraft.
After spending 12 minutes alongside the bombers, the Tu-95’s flew back to Anadyr in Eastern Russia.
The two Russian flights are said to have come closer to the U.S. mainland than any others in the last two years.
U.S.-Russia relations were recently described as being at a potential “all-time low” by President Donald Trump.
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