U.S. deploys jets to intercept Russian bombers near Alaska

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Late Monday, the U.S. Air Force dispatched two F-22 stealth fighters to intercept two Russian long-range bombers that were near Alaska.

A Pentagon official reported that the U.S. military jets visually identified the Russian bombers as TU-95 “Bear” bombers, which are capable of carrying nuclear weapons.

The official said the Russian planes involved in Monday’s event did not appear to be armed and that the interception was conducted in a “safe and professional” manner because the bombers did not break international norms or violate U.S. airspace.

During the incident, the U.S. jets flew alongside the Russian bombers for a short time before the bombers switched direction and headed away from the U.S.

The incident comes at a time in which tensions between the U.S. and Russia continue to grow, especially concerning the civil war in Syria.

While President Trump ordered a missile strike to a Syrian airfield after learning Syrian President Bashar Assad allegedly used chemical weapons on his own people, Russia has long supported Assad and condemned Trump’s decision.

Earlier in April, Sec. of State Rex Tillerson said that following the strike, relations between the U.S. and Russia had hit “a low point.”

H/T: The Hill

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