PILOTS in one of the two Russian supersonic bombers intercepted near UK skies last week had started the countdown to arm a nuclear bomb, sources revealed last night.
The discovery was made after RAF specialists analyzed a four-second signal transmitted from one of the Tupolev Tu-160 bombers, known by Nato as “Blackjacks”, in the days following Thursday’s incursion.
Analysts at RAF Boulmer, Britain’s Control and Reporting Centre, confirmed that the Russian bombers had begun the sequence to arm nuclear weapons while carrying out the incursion.
It is not the first time they have done this and comparison with a similar signal transmitted by a TU-95 “Bear” bomber revealed Russian air crew had begun the countdown during an incursion last year, as well.
RUSSIAN bombers which were caught flying close to the Cornish coast are likely to have gathered “valuable intelligence”, senior military figures have warned.
The two long-range Russian “Bear” planes – which are capable of carrying nuclear missiles– were intercepted by RAF jets in UK airspace in February.
But they are believed to have gained vital information about UK defences, experts have now warned. Continue reading
The two RAF planes, which are currently policing the Baltic skies, were alerted after the Russian Ilyushin IL-20 Coot surveillance aircraft was spotted.
The Ministry of Defence (MoD) said the incident took place in international airspace over the Gulf of Finland at lunchtime. Continue reading
Bodmin woman who spotted planes while taking driving lesson contradicts official position that Russians did not enter UK airspace
At least one of the two Russian Bear bombers that were escorted away from the Cornish coast entered British airspace, a witness has claimed, contrary to the official version of events.
The apparent incursion, the latest in a series by Russian warplanes amid heightened tension between the two countries, prompted David Cameron to say Moscow was trying to make “some sort of point”. But if encroachment into British airspace was confirmed, the UK government would face pressure to respond more forcefully.
Tensions between Russia and the UK have heightened after it was revealed that the Russian bomber intercepted by RAF fighter jets was carrying a nuclear missile designed to destroy Trident submarines.
The TU-95 aircraft were spotted on long range radar flying down from Scotland towards the English Channel, where they were close to entering British airspace, the Sunday Express report.
Ministry of Defence sources revealed the ‘seek and find’ nuclear warhead missile which can destroy the British Vanguard submarines which form the country’s nuclear deterrent.