BEIRUT, LEBANON (12:20 P.M.) – Two Russian Su-27 and Su-30 military aircraft took off to intercept two U.S. strategic bombers over the Black Sea, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Friday.

A statement issued by the Russian Ministry of Defense stated that their air defense services of the southern and western military regions revealed the flight of American B-1B strategic bombers over the waters of the Baltic Sea and Black Sea.

The statement continued that the fighters Su-27 and Su-30 from the air defense forces in the southern military region took off to intercept American aircraft.

The ministry stated that the Russian fighters approached the American planes from a safe distance and identified the warplanes as U.S. B-1B bombers.

The statement stated that the bombers then changed their direction and moved away from the Russian international borders.

The ministry pointed out that the Russian air traffic control devices were following the flight of American bombers and that the mission of the Russian fighters took place within the framework of international rules for the use of airspace.

They added that Russian warplanes “returned safely to their airports after carrying out their mission.”

Earlier on Friday, the U.S. Forces Europe Command reported that two U.S. B-1B strategic bombers circled over the waters of the Black Sea, after crossing the Atlantic Ocean.

The U.S. command indicated that the two bombers took off from the “Ellsworth” base in South Dakota. They noted that the bombers flew over the Black Sea, and for the first time, accompanied by Ukrainian Su-27 and MiG-29 and Turkish refueling aircraft KC-135.

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The command also stated that the mission of the two bombers included training in coordination with Polish fighters (F-16 and “MiG-29”) and Romanian (F-16 and “MiG-21”), which had ensured their escort and the conduct of combat patrols in the Black Sea region.

Lancer B-1B is a strategic ultrasonic launcher with variable sweep wings.

The Su-30 fighter, which participated in the interception process, is a 4th generation fighter, designed by the Sukhoi Foundation, and used as one of the aircraft of the Russian Air Defense Forces.

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