Russian fighter planes again spotted off Alaskan coast

Russian Army

Russian Army

A spokesperson for the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) told FP that on Thursday evening, the American F-22s and Canadian CS-18 Hornets didn't attempt to make radio contact with the Russian bombers, and the Russians never attempted to communicate with US or Canadian military installations on the ground.

On Tuesday, two TU-95 bombers flying up the Aleutian Island chain were tracked by an E-3 AWAC aircraft as they flew 35 miles from the Alaska coast before turning around.

Pentagon officials said they believed the Russians were testing the U.S. Air Force's response to their bomber flights. The Japanese have had to scramble fighter jets four times recently due to Russian planes in close proximity to Japanese air space.

This is the fourth time this week that Russian aircraft are observed near North American airspace, according to Ms. Stadnyk.

The incident was followed by another flight less than 24 hours later, when another United States surveillance aircraft intercepted two Russian bombers in the same area.

An E-3 surveillance aircraft was scrambled in response to the second sighting of Russian bombers off the Alaskan coast in 24 hours, a U.S. defense official told CNN.

The Russian Defense Ministry confirmed on Wednesday that two Russian Tu-95MS bombers were escorted by US F-22 fighters near Alaska.

Norad spokeswoman Jennifer Stadnyk says the bombers did not violate Canadian or American airspace at any time.

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Miller said the activity this week is not unprecedented given that the peak of long range Russian bomber flights into the AZID occurred in 2014.

Russian Federation is exercising its long-range bomber force.

Russian Federation has also flown its jets off the coast of US allies like Japan, CNN noted.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called out the Kremlin earlier this month for supporting the Syrian government of president Bashar Assad, who is widely seen by the West as being responsible for the attack.

But he noted the Russians have been conducting such military flights throughout Europe and Asia for years, "so if it's a message to Trump, what's the message?"

"This was a show of force by the Russians to show us that they are still here", Kinzinger said.

Steve Saideman, a political science professor at Carleton University's Norman Paterson School of International Affairs, said the Russians could be trying to send a signal to the Trump administration.