The aircraft were scrambled after two Tupolev Tu-160 strategic bombers were spotted approaching UK airspace near the Shetland Islands.

RAF Typhoon intercepts russian bomber

February, 7 - In the early morning quick reaction alert Typhoon fighter jets from RAF Lossiemouth and RAF Coningsby took off to monitor two Russian Air Force Blackjack bombers flying in the UK area of interest.

The bombers flew from the northeast and passed along the west of Ireland and France before turning around and reaching the Spanish coast.

The French Air Force said in a statement that two Mirage 2000 fighter jets intercepted the bombers while approached Brittany after passing Ireland.

A Spanish F-18 Hornet joined the escort over the Bay of Biscay before the Russian aircraft turned around and returned north on the same route.

Tu-160 Blackjacks is a supersonic strategic bomber designed to carry both nuclear and conventional bombs. Since 2015 Blackjacks have taken part in long-range bombing missions over Syria.

The Russian ministry of defence confirmed that two bombers had carried out a "planned air patrol" over international waters.

"At some stages of the flight the Tu-160s were accompanied by foreign aircraft, including pilots of the British air force, for whom escorting Russian aircraft and naval vessels is for some reason always considered an exceptional event and the main news of the day," the ministry said in a statement.

"All flights by the Russian air force are carried out strictly in accordance with international rules on the use of neutral airspace and seas, and without violating the borders of other countries," the statement added.

It's non the first time that RAF fighter jets intercept russian bombers. In September 2016 Typhoons from RAF Lossiemouth scrambled two Russian bombers close to UK airspace.

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