This is the moment a Russian Sukhoi Su-27 fighter jet intercepts a US reconnaissance plane over the Black Sea and escorts it away from the Russian border amid rising tensions between the two countries.
The footage was shared on social media by the Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation on 14th July.
The crew on board the Russian fighter identified the aerial target as a Boeing RC-135 strategic reconnaissance aircraft of the US Air Force and escorted it over the Black Sea, according to the Russian MoD.
The Russian authorities added that the fighter jet escorted the US plane away from the border before returning to the home airfield, adding that there was no violation of the border as a result.
Mikhail Popov, Deputy Secretary of the Security Council of the Russian Federation, told the newspaper Rossiyskaya Gazeta that Western countries are creating military tension near Russian borders.
He said: “The West has in fact taken a course towards the implementation of strategic military, political, and psychological pressure on the Russian Federation, as well as a deliberate escalation of military tensions near the borders with Russia, which does not contribute to strategic stability.”
The Russian MoD posted a similar video this week showing a Sukhoi Su-30 fighter plane intercepting a US Air Force EP-3E Ares reconnaissance aircraft over the Black Sea on 13th July.
In a post on social media, the department wrote: “On July 13, 2021, an air target approaching the state border of the Russian Federation was detected over the Black Sea by radar control of the airspace of the duty air defence of the Southern Military District.
“To classify the air target and prevent violations of the state border of the Russian Federation, an air defence forces Su-30 fighter of the Southern Military District was airlifted.
“After the foreign military aircraft turned away from the state border of the Russian Federation, the Russian fighter returned safely to the home airfield.”
The NDCC claimed that the “flight of the Russian fighter was carried out in strict accordance with the international rules for the use of airspace”.
The two incidents come amid rising tensions in the Black Sea region between NATO and Russian forces.
The area has been a hotspot for tension after Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014.
Russia’s capture of the region from Ukraine gained the country a stronger footing in the Black Sea region, along with its existing naval base in Sevastopol.
A NATO official told Newsweek: “NATO ships routinely operate in the Black Sea, consistent with international law, usually patrolling the waters for around two-thirds of the year.
“NATO supports Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognised borders, extending to its territorial waters. We do not and will not recognise Russia’s illegal and illegitimate annexation of Crimea and denounce its temporary occupation.”