U.S. fighter jets were scrambled Tuesday to intercept Russian warplanes flying near Alaska’s coast for the second consecutive day, military officials said Thursday, emphasizing the Russian aircraft posed no threat to the United States.
North American Aerospace Defense Command, or NORAD, detected and intercepted four Russian aircraft — two TU-95 BEAR-H bombers, a SU-30 fighter aircraft and a SU-35 fighter aircraft — in the Alaska region on Tuesday, just one day after a similar intercept occurred near Alaska, the Pentagon said. Officials said the Russian planes remained in international airspace and operated professionally.
Such intercepts are fairly routine, the U.S. military said.
“Two NORAD F-35A fighters intercepted the Russian aircraft,” NORAD said in a statement. “Supporting NORAD aircraft included two F-16 fighters, one E-3 Sentry [airborne warning and control system aircraft] and two KC-135 Stratotankers.”
The Tuesday intercept was at least the second one in 2023. On Monday, two NORAD F-16 fighter jets intercepted two Russian bombers and two fighter jets off Alaska’s coast in a similar incident. As with Monday’s intercept, the Russian plans Tuesday remained outside of U.S. sovereign airspace, the Pentagon said.