Nato fighter jets scrambled to intercept Russian spy plane over Baltic Sea

10 April 2024, 15:46 | Updated: 10 April 2024, 15:49

"[Italian] Eurofighters currently Air Policing out of Malbrok [Poland], had their first scramble 2 days ago & their second Alpha scramble yesterday," wrote Nato&squot;s Aircomand in an update posted on X.
"[Italian] Eurofighters currently Air Policing out of Malbrok [Poland], had their first scramble 2 days ago & their second Alpha scramble yesterday," wrote Nato's Aircomand in an update posted on X. Picture: Alamy

By Danielle De Wolfe

Nato has been forced to scramble fighter jets after a Russian military aircraft entered Swedish airspace over the Baltic Sea.

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The Ilyushin Il-20 electronic signals intelligence (ELINT) aircraft, used by Russia to spy on foreign nations since the start of the Cold War, was recorded entering Swedish airspace on Wednesday.

The soviet era aircraft registered on radars close to the island of Gotland, an area of land widely regarded as the most strategic location in the Baltic.

It comes amid rising tensions between Russia and the West, with Nato's Deputy General exclusively telling LBC that the UK should prepare for 'something close to war'.

He also reiterated that Russia 'cannot be trusted' and would simply rearm should a peace treaty be put in place.

"[Italian] Eurofighters currently Air Policing out of Malbrok [Poland], had their first scramble 2 days ago & their second Alpha scramble yesterday," wrote Nato&squot;s Aircomand in an update posted on X.
"[Italian] Eurofighters currently Air Policing out of Malbrok [Poland], had their first scramble 2 days ago & their second Alpha scramble yesterday," wrote Nato's Aircomand in an update posted on X. Picture: X NATO
"[Italian] Eurofighters currently Air Policing out of Malbrok [Poland], had their first scramble 2 days ago & their second Alpha scramble yesterday," wrote Nato&squot;s Aircomand in an update posted on X.
"[Italian] Eurofighters currently Air Policing out of Malbrok [Poland], had their first scramble 2 days ago & their second Alpha scramble yesterday," wrote Nato's Aircomand in an update posted on X. Picture: nato X

The Russian aircraft was escorted out of the airspace by a pair of Nato Eurofighter Typhoons scrambled from a nearby German airbase near the town of Laage.

The two jets met the Il-20 after Nato reported the aircraft did not respond to repeated requests to identify itself.

Guided away from the area shortly after appearing on radar system, the pilots were reportedly in the air within 15 minutes.

Read more: UK should prepare for 'something close to war', Nato's Deputy General tells LBC, as he warns Russia 'cannot be trusted'

Read more: PM says there's 'no' place for swastikas in Britain as he vows to 'hold police to account'

"[Italian] Eurofighters currently Air Policing out of Malbrok [Poland], had their first scramble 2 days ago & their second Alpha scramble yesterday," wrote Nato's Aircomand in an update posted on X.

"The jets intercepted a [Russian] IL20 that was flying over the Baltic Sea. It was not answering to the requests of identification."

"[Italian] Eurofighters currently Air Policing out of Malbrok [Poland], had their first scramble 2 days ago & their second Alpha scramble yesterday," wrote Nato&squot;s Aircomand in an update posted on X.
"[Italian] Eurofighters currently Air Policing out of Malbrok [Poland], had their first scramble 2 days ago & their second Alpha scramble yesterday," wrote Nato's Aircomand in an update posted on X. Picture: X NATO

The warning came as the Deputy General, Mr Geoana, added Nato members had "neglected defence" in recent years, leaving countries, including the UK, unprepared.

Pushed on the subject of conscription, Mr Geoana said: "I think what we have to tell our citizens is, 'Listen, there is a more dangerous world'.

He went on to add that "nobody is perfectly prepared" should an international conflict involving Nato be declared, adding that Ukraine becoming a member of both Nato and the EU was an inevitability.

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