Top NATO commander says Russian air incursions bigger, more provocative

Reuters News
Posted: Nov 03, 2014 9:46 AM

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - NATO's top military commander said on Monday that recent incursions into European air space by Russian fighters and long-range bombers included larger, more complex formations of aircraft flying more "provocative" routes than they usually do.

"What is significant is that across history, most of these incursions have been very small groups of airplanes, sometimes singletons or at most two aircraft," U.S. Air Force General Philip Breedlove, the Supreme Allied Commander in Europe, told a Pentagon briefing.

"What you saw this past week was a larger, more complex formation of aircraft carrying out a little deeper, and I would say a little bit more provocative, flight path."

(Reporting by David Alexander; Editing by Susan Heavey)