Sept. 5 (UPI) — A Russian military leader said Saturday that Russian fighter planes intercepted a Norwegian patrol aircraft over the Barents Sea for the third time in a row.
The Russian state-run news agency TASS reported that on Saturday, Russian radars detected a target in international airspace headed toward Russian airspace and a fighter jet was scrambled to intercept it.
According to the Russian National Defense Control Center, an MiG-31 fighter with the Northern Fleet’s air defense units identified the aircraft as a P-3S Orion maritime surveillance aircraft belonging to the Royal Norwegian Air Force.
After the Norwegian aircraft turned away from Russian airspace, the MiG-31 returned to its home airfield, according to the Russian government.
According to TASS, Saturday was the third consecutive day Russian planes had intercepted Norwegian aircraft, and last week, an Mig-31 fighter jet intercepted a Norwegian Orion aircraft over the Barents Sea.
Last week two Russian Su-27 Flanker pilots intercepted a U.S. Air Force B-52 bomber over international waters in the Black Sea, and F-22 fighter planes associated with North American Aerospace Defense Command intercepted three groups of two Russian patrol aircraft near Alaska before they entered U.S. or Canadian airspace.
And in March Norway used an F-35A fighter plane to intercept two Russian Tu-142 anti-submarine aircraft, with MiG-31 fighter planes escorting them, as the Russian crafts came near Norwegian airspace.