Close shave: Russian fighters drive NATO warplane away from defense chief's plane

NATO F-18 Fighter Jet Chased Away From Russian Defence Minister's Plane Over Baltic Sea- MoDScreengrab of amateur MoD video

NATO F-18 Fighter Jet Chased Away From Russian Defence Minister's Plane Over Baltic Sea- MoDScreengrab of amateur MoD video

NATO's F-18 jet tried to approach the plane of Russia's Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu over the worldwide waters of the Baltic Sea only to be forced away by Russia's Sukhoi-27 fighters, a TASS correspondent reported from onboard the Russian defense minister's plane. It did not specify Shoigu's aircraft type.

The TASS news agency on August 13 reported that Shoigu's plane was flying from Russia's Baltic Sea exclave of Kaliningrad to Moscow when the incident occurred over the Baltic Sea. The Sukhoi Su-27s were escorting Shoigu's aircraft over the global waters of Baltic Sea when the Spanish Air Force EF-18A came too close to the Defense Minister's plane. NATO's F-18 tried to approach it over the global waters of the Baltic Sea but Russian fighters forced the jet away.

Shogu was in Kaliningrad to attend a ceremony for the construction of a new military academy.

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Soon one of the Su-27s escorting the Russian Defense Minister's plane is seen moving in between the two aircraft following which the F/A-18 banks towards the left, ascends and then flies away from the Russian jets.

Planes from the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation air police mission in the Baltic approached to identify an airplane that was flying close to the alliance's airspace, North Atlantic Treaty Organisation explained.

Such incidents have added tension to Russia's relationship with the West, which has been severely strained by Moscow's takeover of Crimea, its support for separatists in eastern Ukraine, and its alleged meddling in the US election in 2016.

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