Close military encounters between Russia and the west ‘at cold war levels’

Report lists 40 cases of ‘brinkmanship’, including near-collision between Russian spy plane and passenger jet, in past eight months

Close military encounters between Russia and the west have jumped to cold war levels, with 40 dangerous or sensitive incidents recorded in the past eight months alone, according to a new report published on Monday.

The report, Dangerous Brinkmanship by the European Leadership Network, logs a series of “highly-disturbing” incidents since the Ukrainian crisis began earlier this year, including an alarming near-collision between a Russian reconnaissance plane and a passenger plane taking off from Denmark in March with 132 passengers on board.

What made the incident especially dangerous was that the Russian plane did not have on its transponders, the usual method of signalling its presence to other aircraft.

The encounters have taken place mainly around the Baltic Sea but also in the Black Sea and along the US and Canadian borders. Continue reading