Mar 26,2008 00:00
MOSCOW -- NATO fighters intercepted Russian bombers conducting refueling exercises near Alaska Wednesday, a spokesman for the Russian air force said.
The NATO fighters intercepted two strategic bombers and two aerial tankers conducting a 16-hour patrol over the Arctic and Pacific Ocean, RIA Novosti said.
"During the flight over neutral waters near Alaska, the Russian planes were accompanied by NATO fighters," Russian air force Col. Alexander Drobyshevsky said.
This is a common occurrence since Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the resumption of patrol missions in August.
Drobyshevsky told RIA Novosti the patrols don't pose a threat to other countries and noted Russia notifies concerned parties ahead of the patrols.
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