Armed RAF fighter jets have been used to intercept Russian “Cold War” military aircraft flying near British airspace, the Air Force said.
The Quick Reaction Alert Typhoons were launched from RAF Lossiemouth, Northern Scotland, after the Russian aircraft were spotted over the North Sea.
They intercepted a pair of TU-142 “Bear-F” maritime patrol and anti-submarine aircraft – referred to as the “Cold War Era” by the RAF.
The planes were tracked by NATO as they moved in the military alliance’s northern air police area.
In a statement, an RAF Lossiemouth Typhoon pilot said: â€œWe have worked closely with Royal Air Force units to deliver another successful interception and to maintain the integrity of British and NATO airspace throughout.
â€œWe were first kept up to date by our NATO colleagues and then guided directly to the Bears from the RAF control and reporting center.
“Refueling an RAF Voyager ensured that we were able to complete our task until the mission was completed and the aircraft left the UK area of â€‹â€‹interest.”
Russian military aircraft entering the controlled zone of Britain’s international airspace can pose a threat to other users, the RAF added.
Russian planes often do not speak to air traffic control or “screech” – they send a code to ensure that they are visible to other flight users and controllers on the ground.