Thursday, January 29, 2015

Britain says fighter jets scrambled to intercept Russian bombers

Blog Editor's Note: Yesterday I had an opportunity to monitor the Russian Air Force TU-95 Bear H voice network on 8131 kHz USB during this event. It was pretty neat to know that they were flying their strategic long range bombers in the North Sea and I was listening to them.

Some of the ground station call signs monitored included Adris, Balans, Katolik and Geolog. Aircraft in this net use their five digit numbers from their "RA" registration.
( e.g. RA-72181 would be 72181).
This morning has been quiet but their is activity on the 11360 kHz USB Russian Air Force net.

LONDON (Reuters) - British Typhoon fighter jets were scrambled to intercept
two Russian Bear long-range bombers which had flown close to UK airspace,
Britain's Ministry of Defence (MoD) said on Thursday.

The Russian planes were detected flying over the Channel, south of England,
on Wednesday and typhoons were launched from Royal Air Force (RAF) bases at
Lossiemouth in Scotland and Coningsby in eastern England, the MoD said.

"The Russian planes were escorted by the RAF until they were out of the UK
area of interest. At no time did the Russian military aircraft cross into UK
sovereign airspace," the Ministry of Defence said in a statement.

Last year, NATO conducted more than 100 intercepts of Russian aircraft,
about three times as many as in 2013, amid sharply increased tensions
between the West and Moscow over the Ukraine crisis.

Elizabeth Quintana, a senior research fellow at defence think-tank the Royal
United Services Institute said Wednesday's incident was unusual however, and
could be linked to Britain beginning an inquiry into the death nine years
ago in London of Kremlin critic and ex-KGB spy Alexander Litvinenko.

"Normally Russian Bears come past Norway and down the North Sea. It could
have been used to probe the RAF speed of reaction south," she told the Daily
Mail newspaper.

"Flying any military aircraft in or close to the sovereign airspace of
another country signals displeasure or at worst aggression."