U.S. Air Force F-15C jets intercept Russian spyplane over the Baltic

U.S. F-15Cs performing Baltics Air Policing were scrambled on Monday to intercept a Russian Il-20.

According to the Latvia’s Military, the U.S. Air Force F-15C deployed to Šiauliai, Lithuania, to provide Air Policing in the Baltics region, intercepted an Il-20 spyplane.

Russian Air Force missions in the area often requires NATO jet fighters to perform Alert Scrambles, to intercept Il-20 spyplanes, Tu-22M Backfire bombers and Su-27 fighter jets. Such close encounters have become a bit more frequent since Russian invasion of Crimea and subsequent international crisis over Ukraine.

On Feb. 24, two F-15Cs taking part to a flyby in Estonia were diverted to intercept a Russian plane before overflying the city of Pärnu.

On Apr. 25, two Tu-95H bombers were intercepted by RAF Typhoons, Dutch and Danish F-16s during a long range patrol around UK.

Image credit: U.S. Air Force

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About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.


  1. Deja vu al over again!! NEXT you righty loons will be TELLING me & Pres.Barack Obama that Puttin will build a NEW SUPER ICBM…..Russia to Build New ICBM by 2018 when the USA killed it’s NEWEST ICBM deployed 30 YEARS ago the MX…..demilled 10 years ago. PERIOD.

  2. We always hear about Russian spy planes and bombers being intercepted and escorted by NATO planes. But, is NATO doing the same thing to Russia? Would such interceptions make the Western press?

  3. What kind of spy plane is that? How it spies while so easily can be detected and intercepted? Maybe it just spies on fish ans whales?

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