The Russian Defense Ministry confirmed that US Air Force F-22 fighters had escorted Russian Tu-95 strategic bombers in the airspace near Alaska. The interception of the two Russian bombers was reported by Fox News.
The Russian Defense Ministry reported that the events took place on April 17th. On that day, two strategic Tu-95MC bombers took off from the Ukrainka airbase in the Amur Region and had successfully completed their air patrol mission. The flight route passed over neutral waters of the Pacific Ocean, along the Aleutian Islands, emphasizes the Defense Ministry. The report says that the Russian aircraft flew about 3,100 miles (5,000 km) at speeds up to 530 mph (850 km/ph) and at altitudes of up to 33,000 feet (10,000 m). “The flight lasted more than seven hours. While over international waters in the Alaska area, the Tu-95MS aircraft were accompanied by US Air Force F-22 fighters for 27 minutes,” the Defense Ministry said.
On Tuesday, Fox News, citing sources in the Pentagon, reported that the F-22 fighters took off to accompany two Russian strategic Tu-95 bombers that flew near the coast of Alaska.
According to their information, the Russian long-range bombers flew a mission on Monday evening (local Alaska time), 100 miles (160 km) from Kodiak Island. The F-22 fighters, along with an E-3 long-range radar detection and control aircraft, took off from Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, which is located near Anchorage, in order to intercept the Russian Air Force aircraft. The American planes accompanied the Russian bombers for 12 minutes, after which they turned away in the direction of Russia, the military said.
Fox News Channel notes that Russian long-range bombers were first seen near American territory after President Donald Trump took office. The last time Tu-95 bombers came close to US territory was on July 4, 2015, when they flew near the coasts of Alaska and California.