NATO jets scrambled four times last week

Fighter jets stationed in the Baltic states as part of NATO's Baltic air policing mission were scrambled four times last week to intercept and accompany Russian planes flying in international airspace above the Baltic Sea, the BNS newswire reported Monday.

The intercepts were conducted by fighter jets deployed at both the Lithuanian Siauliai and the Estonian Amari air base, the Lithuanian Defense Ministry said on Monday.

NATO jets accompanied Russian military transport aircraft Il-76, An-26, Il-20 and Il-22, all of which were flying in accordance with pre-filed flight plans, had their onboard transponders switched on, and maintained radio communication with air traffic control centers.

NATO fighters also intercepted one Il-20 military transport aircraft flying according to a pre-filed flight plan which maintained radio communication with air traffic control but whose transponder was switched off.

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