Allied Sky was meant to be the latest iteration of Bomber Task Force (BTF) missions that have been conducted in the European theater of operations since 2018. "The U.S. Air Force routinely operates aircraft in the region in accordance with recognized global safety standards as prescribed in worldwide Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) rules of flight". Other aircraft included RAF Typhoons and FAF Mirage 2000, BAF F-16s while reportedly an Italian Air Force F-35 was also involved in the escort duties.
Earlier, two Russian fighters Su-27 were scrambled to intercept US Air Force strategic bomber B-52H over the Baltic Sea in order to prevent violation of the Russian state border.
The air force said United States pilots were "exercising our freedom of navigation and overflight" when the incident occurred.
North Atlantic Treaty Organisation fighters accompanied 10 Russian Tu-142 aircraft during their flight in the far sea area, which flew as part of the Ocean Shield-2020 naval exercises, TASS news agency reported on Saturday, citing Russian navy commander Nikolai Yevmenov. "We be expecting them to work in just worldwide requirements set to guarantee security and avert incidents".
Three Su-27 fighters from the air defence forces of the Baltic Fleet were scrambled. The B-52H 61-0034/NATO 01 was the only one to use its Mode-S transponder: it could be tracked online during its long trip using the popular flight tracking websites ADSBExchange, PlaneRadar.ru, Airnav RadarBox etc. from RAF Fairford across Eastern Europe to the Black Sea area and then back via (among the others) Turkey, Greece, Croatia, Slovenia, Italy and France. The 5th BW was deployed to Europe to demonstrate US capability to command, control and conduct bomber missions across the globe.
"This year, we've conducted more than a dozen intercepts, the most in recent years".