RAF Typhoons have been scrambled to intercept a Russian bomber plane flying near NATO airspace over the Black Sea.
Two British jets based in Romania were launched in response to the Russian Su-24 FENCER aircraft earlier this morning.
In a statement, the RAF said its pilots patrolled the skies for a short period as a deterrent after the Russian plane was “close to infringing NATO airspace”.
The Typhoons were operating from the Mihail Kogalniceanu Air Base near Constanta on the Black Sea coast.
A pilot from 1 (Fighter) Squadron said: “When we received the message to scramble, we sprinted to the jets with our engineers, fired up the aircraft and took off all within a matter of minutes.
“We were then vectored toward the unknown Russian aircraft who were close to infringing NATO airspace.
“The Russian aircraft did not enter NATO airspace so we were ordered to patrol the skies for a short period of time as a deterrent, until finally returning to MK Air Base.
“We routinely conduct air policing in the UK so today’s event is familiar and went seamlessly.”
The RAF mission in Romania is part of NATO’s assurance measures introduced in 2014.
Its latest intervention comes amid heightened tension between the UK and Russia following the novichok poisoning of former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury.
The British government has blamed Russia for the nerve agent attack, accusing Moscow of using the UK as a “dumping ground for poison”.
Russia has denied the accusations.
From – SkyNews