Russian warplane swoops in uninvited to spy on NATO’s biggest military exercise since the end of the Cold War

Sunday, November 4, 2018
By Paul Martin

Marines on board USS Mount Whitney gathered for a photo on deck when Tupolev TU-142 flew overhead
Russian Ministry of Defence said two of Soviet Union-era planes had carried out ‘planned flight’ of 12 hours
Jet was flying over Exercise Trident Juncture 2018 – NATO’s largest collective defence exercise in 10 years

By AMIE GORDON
DAILYMAIL.COM
4 November 2018

A Russian reconnaissance warplane has been spotted flying over NATO’s biggest military exercise since the end of the Cold War.

Marines on board USS Mount Whitney off the Norwegian coast, had gathered for a group photo on deck when a Tupolev TU-142 soared overhead.

The Soviet Union-era jet was seen flying low over Exercise Trident Juncture 2018 – NATO’s largest collective defence exercise in more than a decade.

Exercise Trident Juncture sees NATO and partner nations training and operating together in an Article 5 scenario, ‘an attack on one is an attack on all’.

A total of 150 aircraft, 40,000 participants and 10,000 vehicles are taking part in the exercise from 25 October–7 November.

The field exercise spans large air, sea and land areas. Land forces will exercise in the area south of Trondheim and north of Oslo, Maritime forces will operate in the sea along the Norwegian coast, and southwards to northern Scotland.

There will be some maritime activity in the Skagerrak and the Baltic Sea and Air forces will operate in the air space over central Norway and parts of Sweden and Finland.

Russia has already made clear its displeasure at NATO’s Trident Juncture exercises, the largest by the alliance since the end of the Cold War.

They warned that the two-week long exercise, which it sees as an anti-Russian show of force, would not go unanswered.

According to the Russian Ministry of Defence, two Tupolev TU-142 carried out a ‘planned flight’ of more than 12 hours.

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