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1 Sep, 2020 10:20

Moscow brands US war games in Estonia 'extremely dangerous,' denies NATO claims Russian fighter jet violated Danish border

Moscow brands US war games in Estonia 'extremely dangerous,' denies NATO claims Russian fighter jet violated Danish border

Russia has accused the US of "escalating tensions in Europe" by holding live-fire exercises "in the immediate vicinity" of its borders. The Defense Ministry also denied a NATO accusation that a Russian jet entered Danish airspace.

In a statement the Russian embassy in Washington said it considers the use of multiple launch rocket systems by US armed forces during the exercises in Estonia to be provocative and extremely dangerous for regional stability, "Russia has repeatedly proposed to the United States and its allies to limit training activities and to divert the exercise zones from the Russia-NATO contact line," the text reads. "Why do this demonstrative saber-rattling? What signal do the NATO members want to send us? Who is actually escalating tensions in Europe? And this is all happening in the context of an aggravated political situation in that region of Europe [in Belarus]."

"A rhetorical question is - how would the Americans react in the event of such shooting by our military at the US border?" the embassy added.

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From September 1 to 10, joint war games by an infantry brigade of the Baltic Armed Forces and the 41st Field Artillery Brigade of the US Army will take place in Estonia. This is the first live firing exercise by US artillery outside their permanent bases in Europe.

On Tuesday morning, the Defense Ministry explained that an Su-27, scrambled to identify a US Air Force strategic bomber, flew over the neutral waters of the Baltic Sea, without violating the Danish border. The comments came in response to a NATO charge that the Russian fighter followed the B52 well into Danish airspace over the island, committing a significant violation of the airspace of a NATO member.

"The Defense Ministry has denied the statement of the North Atlantic Alliance about the violation of the Danish state border by the Russian Su-27 fighter," an official said. They added that the flight was carried out in strict accordance with international airspace regulations.

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On Monday, Russian airspace control over the neutral waters of the Baltic Sea detected three air targets approaching the Russian border, the Ministry outlined, as cited by the TASS news agency. To identify them, three Su-27s from the air defense forces of the Baltic Fleet were scrambled. The crews of the Russian fighters identified the aerial targets as US Air Force B-52H strategic bombers. Russian fighters returned to their home base after the American aircraft left the Russian state border.

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