Sunday, September 11, 2011

Russian Bears circle off Japan, South Korean and Japanese intercept

Japan has said that a pair of Russian Tupolev Tu-95MS 'Bear' bombers have conducted an overflight of the seas off Japan, heading through the Straits of Tsushima before turning around and flying back to their base via the Pacific Ocean east of Japan. (NOTE: The Bears were likely to be from the 79th or 182nd GBAD/Heavy Bomber Air Regiment based at Ukrainka-Seryshevo in Russia's Far East)

Russian defence authorities have confirmed that the aircraft conducted a mission lasting 19 hours over the Pacific. It added that the Tupolevs were escorted by Japan Air Self Defence Force and Republic of Korea Air Force fighters at various times, and that there were no violations of Japan's airspace.

Russia and Japan are embroiled in a dispute over the ownership of the Kurile Islands, north of Japan's northern island of Hokkaido.

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