Aug. 29 (UPI) -- Two Russian Su-27 Flanker pilots intercepted a U.S. Air Force B-52 bomber over international waters in the Black Sea Friday, according to the Air Force.
A press release issued by the service Saturday said the Russian pilots "flew in an unsafe and unprofessional manner" while crossing within 100 feet of the B-52, causing turbulence and restricting the B-52's ability to maneuver.
"Actions like these increase the potential for midair collisions, are unnecessary, and inconsistent with good airmanship and international flight rules," Gen. Jeff Harrigian, the commander of U.S. Air Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa, said. "While the Russian aircraft were operating in international airspace, they jeopardized the safety of flight of the aircraft involved. We expect them to operate within international standards set to ensure safety and prevent accidents," he added.
According to the Air Force, the U.S. aircraft was conducting routine operations in international airspace and U.S. aircraft frequently fly in the region.
B-52 Stratofortress bombers flew over all 30 NATO countries Friday accompanied by allied aircraft in a ceremonial show of solidarity.