The Russian Defense Ministry has released video footage of what it says was an interception over neutral waters of three U.S. planes that were flying toward its border over the Black Sea.
The ministry said it scrambled a Su-30 fighter plane on Friday that approached the U.S. planes "at a safe distance," after which the U.S. planes reportedly changed course away from Russia's border.
The U.S. planes included a RC-135 reconnaissance aircraft, a P-8 Poseidon and a KC-135 aerial refueling aircraft, according to Russian authorities.
The ministry added that the Russian fighter plane had strictly followed all international safety regulations during the interception.
The following day, Saturday, a pair of F-22 Raptors intercepted four Russian Tu-142 reconnaissance aircraft entering the Alaskan Air Defense Identification Zone, the North American Aerospace Defense Command said in a statement. They came within 65 nautical miles of the Aleutian Islands and hung around for almost eight hours
That intercept followed a number of similar encounters earlier this month, most recently on Wednesday when U.S. F-22s intercepted two Russian IL-38 maritime patrol aircraft entering the zone. They came within 50 nautical miles of Unimak Island in the Aleutians, NORAD officials said.
Saturday’s interception was the sixth this month. Since Russia resumed long-range aviation activities in 2007, there has been an average of around seven intercepts a year, though the number in any given year has been zero to 15, according to NORAD.