Dec 6, 2015
Russian Bombers Circle Guam
“On Nov. 25th, two Russian bomber aircraft circumvented Guam, transiting international airspace,” said Army Maj. Dave Eastburn, a Pacific Command spokesman.
The latest bomber flights around the island were the fourth time in the past three years that Russian bombers circumnavigated Guam.
Earlier incursions took place on Dec. 13 and Nov. 12, 2014, and Feb. 12, 2013. During the 2013 incident, U.S. F-15 jets were scrambled to intercept the bombers.
Eastburn declined to specify the exact type of bombers involved in the circumnavigation and sought to play down the incident, noting that the flights “in no way” violated U.S. airspace around the island.
Other officials said the bombers were Tu-95 Bear H nuclear-capable bombers.
One defense official said Japanese jet fighters intercepted the bombers during an earlier stage of the Guam overflight.
Tu-95s are known to carry Russia’s new long-range Kh-55SM cruise missiles, which can be armed with either nuclear or conventional warheads and have a range of up to 1,800 miles.
The command said in a statement no U.S. jets were dispatched to intercept the Russian bombers since the aircraft were flying in international airspace.