The Japan Air Self-Defense Force fighter jets intercepted groups of Russian and Chinese bombers flew a joint patrol mission over the Western Pacific Tuesday.
In a statement presented by Japan’s Defense Ministry, said that two Russian Tu-95MS Bear-H and four Chinese H-6K Badger long-range bombers remained in international airspace flew over the Sea of Japan and the East China Sea before they were intercepted by Japanese fighter jets.
The Russian Defense Ministry has announced that its bombers took part in a joint patrol mission with Chinese partners over the Western Pacific.
“The joint mission was intended to develop and deepen the comprehensive Russia-China partnership, further increase the level of cooperation between the two militaries, expand their ability for joint action and strengthen strategic stability,” the Russian military said in a statement Tuesday.
Additional reports by Global Times state that the first such joint aerial strategic patrol took place on July 23, 2019, in which China sent two H-6Ks and Russia sent two Tu-95s, which jointly patrolled the Sea of Japan and the East China Sea.
The air forces of China and Russia held the second joint aerial strategic patrol in the Asia-Pacific region on Tuesday, the two countries’ defense ministries simultaneously announced on the day, following the first one in 2019.
Also noted that for Russia, conducting aerial strategic patrols over the open seas is very common, not so for China. But as China is facing increasing security risks and the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Air Force is becoming more capable, China’s long-range strategic patrols will also gradually become more frequent, which is a common practice among major powers and is in line with international law, said Chinese military aviation expert Fu Qianshao said.