On May 12, Russian airspace control systems detected three aerial targets over the neutral waters of the Black Sea approaching Russia’s state border. A Russian Su-27 fighter jet was scrambled to intercept two Mirage 2000 tactical combat planes and a C-135 aerial refueling tanker of the French Air Force over the neutral waters of the Black Sea. The Russian fighter performed its flight in strict compliance with the international rules of using the airspace, Russia’s National Defense Control Center reported on Wednesday.
To identify them and prevent violations of the state border, a Su-27 fighter from the air defence duty forces of the joint air force and air defence of the Southern Military District was airlifted. The pilot of the Russian fighter identified the air targets as two Mirage-2000 tactical aircraft and a C-135 tanker aircraft of the French Air Force. The flight was carried out in strict accordance with the international rules for the use of airspace. The state border of the Russian Federation was not violated.
The Sukhoi Su-27 (NATO reporting name: Flanker) is a Soviet-origin twin-engine supermaneuverable fighter aircraft designed by Sukhoi. It was intended as a direct competitor for the large United States fourth-generation fighters such as the Grumman F-14 Tomcat and F-15 Eagle, with 3,530-kilometre (1,910 nmi) range, heavy aircraft ordnance, sophisticated avionics and high maneuverability. The Su-27 was designed for air superiority missions, and subsequent variants are able to perform almost all aerial warfare operations. It was designed with the Mikoyan MiG-29 as its complement.