Russian planes fly over U.S. naval ships
Mar 20,2009 00:00 by UPI

WASHINGTON -- Two Russian planes flew within 500 feet of U.S. Navy ships participating in military drills with South Korea, military officials said.

After trying unsuccessfully to contact the pilots, U.S. fighter jets met up with the Russian planes and flew with them until they left the area, CNN reported.

One incident occurred Monday, when Russian Ilyushin IL-38 maritime patrol aircraft flew over the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis while it was in international waters in the Sea of Japan. The Russian aircraft flew within 500 feet of the carrier, which was lower than other Russian flyovers in the past year, military officials said.

On Tuesday, two Russian long-range bombers overflew the Stennis and the USS Blue Ridge several times at about 2,000 feet, U.S. military officials told CNN.

Military officials said U.S. aircraft tried contacting the Russian planes on international air frequency radio channels on both days but the Russian pilots didn't respond.

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