Russian military aircraft entered the Alaska Air Defense Recognition Area and were received by US fighter jets, backed by US tankers, NORAD said in a statement. In the first meeting, NORAD said, two Russian bombers, two Russian fighter jets and a Russian early warning and control aircraft came within 20 nautical miles from the coast of Alaska. The second formation was two bombers and an early warning and control aircraft that came within 32 nautical miles.
NORAD also said, “Russian military aircraft remained in the international airspace and at no time entered the dominant airspace of the United States.”
General Terrence J. O’Shaughnessy, commander of NORAD, said on Wednesday that “the interception of many Russian aircraft demonstrates the readiness and ability of NORAD forces to defend their homelands.”
“Air patrols that protect the approaches of our nations and send a clear message that we continue to carry out defense missions in our homeland with the same ability and capability that we always bring to the race,” O’Shaughnessy said.