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Two Russian Tu-95 MS Bear strategic bombers have accomplished a routine patrol mission over neutral waters of the Arctic and Pacific oceans and the Aleutian Islands, an Air Force spokesman said on Friday.
"The air patrol mission took place on November 18-19, 2009. Two turboprop Tu-95 MS bombers took off from a Russian Air Force base in eastern Russia, and the route of their flight passed from the neutral waters of the Arctic Ocean to the Aleutian Islands in the [north] Pacific Ocean," Lt. Col. Vladimir Drik said.
He said the bombers spent around 16 hours in the air, and were accompanied by two NATO F-22 fighters from an airbase in Alaska.
Russia resumed strategic bomber patrol flights over the Pacific, Atlantic, and Arctic oceans in August 2007, following an order from then-president Vladimir Putin.
All flights by Russian aircraft are performed in strict compliance with international law on the use of airspace over neutral waters, without intruding in the airspace of other states, Drik said.
MOSCOW, November 20 (RIA Novosti)
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Earlier this month, Russia hosted the Fourth International Meeting of the Arctic Council at Naryan-Mar, a seaport in the Barents Sea, to discuss issues relating to the infrastructure and safety of ships passing through the Northern Sea Route (NSR).