Media reporting Russian Defense Minister’s plane approached by NATO fighter jet

Royal Air Force File Photo of Russian Fighter SU-27 and NATO F-18 in background.

Multiple western and Russian media outlets are reporting that Russian Su-27 warplanes forced away a NATO F-18 jet after it approached an aircraft carrying Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu over international waters today.

TASS, a Russian news agency reports that Shoigu’s plane was flying from Russia’s Baltic Sea exclave of Kaliningrad to Moscow when the incident occurred. The report says Shoigu’s plane was also carrying a TASS reporter at the time. It did not specify Shoigu’s aircraft type.

NATO did not immediately comment on the report.

Russian media is reporting the minister’s aircraft was being escorted by two navy Su-27 jet fighters.

TASS earlier reported Shoigu was visiting Kaliningrad for a ceremony marking the start of construction on a branch of the Nakhimov Naval School.

Russian media reported a similar event involving a plane carrying Shoigu in June 2017, saying the minister’s plane was “buzzed” by a NATO jet over the Baltic Sea before being chased away by escort planes.

Encounters between Russian and NATO warplanes has increased as Moscow continues to demonstrate its resurgent military presence in the Arctic.

Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. Photographer: Yuri Kadobnov/AFP via Getty Images

About the Author

Josh Campbell
Start your morning with the Splash on Denendeh Sunrise from 7:30-8:30am. Campbell was trained and mentored by longtime CKLB host and Gwich'in entertainer William Greenland. Prior to hosting the morning show and filling in on the Saturday Request Show, he had stints in the Yukon on CKRW the Rush, CBC North in Yellowknife, and began his broadcasting career at CJCD Mix 100. Before moving North he was born and raised on the banks of the Tobique River, the traditional territory of the Wolastoqiyik, Tobique Maliseet First Nation.