Turkey scrambles F-16 jets against Russian surveillance plane
The scramble occurred after a Russian IL-20 surveillance plane was observed flying parallel to the Black Sea coast. DHA photo
The Turkish Air Force scrambled six F-16 fighter jets after a Russian surveillance plane flew parallel to its Black Sea coast, the military said on March 7. The move marked a second incident in the last three days amid ongoing tension between Ukraine and Russia over Crimea.
The scramble occurred after a Russian IL-20 surveillance plane was observed flying parallel to the Black Sea coast in international airspace from 8:32 a.m. to 1:38 p.m on March 7. The Turkish Air Force scrambled two fighter jets in three different missions to intercept Russian plane. The incident came only three days after another Russian plane was intercepted by eight F-16 jets.
Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula, which juts into the north of the Black Sea, is at the center of the current standoff between Russia and Ukraine’s new pro-Western government. NATO member Turkey forms the southern coastline of the Black Sea.