Do NOT provoke us’ Russia issue dire WARNING after RAF jets scrambled

Sunday, August 26, 2018
By Paul Martin

Royal Air Force (RAF) interceptions of Russian military aircraft have been labelled dangerous and ‘provocative’ by Moscow in a clear warning to the UK.

By CHARLIE MOLONEY
Express.co.uk
Sun, Aug 26, 2018

Russia said the RAF intercepted its aircraft over the Black Sea and scrambled to intercept two suspected Russian fighter aircraft on Wednesday.

The Russian embassy said in a statement: “What kind of threat to Britain or even its allies does a Russian patrol aircraft hypothetically pose while conducting flights near Russia’s own coastline, more than 2,000 km (1242.74 miles) from the British Isles?

“Instead of strengthening anyone’s security, the British authorities are using such a military presence (in the Black Sea area) for provocative actions.

“Not just by making verbal statements, regrettable as they are, but also in real military terms, which is simply dangerous.”

Today the British defence and foreign ministries declined to comment.

Britain’s NATO allies, Romania, Bulgaria and Turkey, border the Black Sea.

Britain’s RAF maintains a presence in the region to deter Russian aggression after Moscow annexed Ukraine’s Crimea in 2014.

Moscow argues its activity in the Black Sea region is routine and compliant with international law.

Today the British defence and foreign ministries declined to comment on Moscow’s accusations.

Mark Lancaster, Britain’s Minister of State for the Armed Forces, warned in a speech in London in July about “an ever more assertive Russia.”

Mr Lancaster said RAF personnel had to intercept Russian military aircraft over 80 times in the last 10 years

Tensions between Britain and Russia have been high since former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were poisoned by a nerve agent in Salisbury in March.

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