16:36 GMT16 May 2021
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    Russia-NATO Relations Reach a New Low (121)

    Amid NATO's ongoing Saber Strike exercises, Latvia's Armed Forces has been counting Russian planes and ships near its borders, reporting Wednesday that they spotted nine Air Force aircraft, two ships and a submarine over the past two days.

    Latvia: NATO drills start 124 miles from Russian border
    © Ruptly . https://www.youtube.com/RuptlyTV
    The official Twitter account of the country's Armed Forces (NBS) noted Wednesday that in the course of air policing missions over international airspace near the Latvian border, the Latvian military had identified two Russian Tu-22M long-range maritime strike bombers and two MiG-31 supersonic interceptors. Earlier, on Tuesday, the NBS tweeted that it had identified an A-50 airborne early warning and control (AWACS) aircraft, an Ilyushin Il-20 turboprop transport plane, an Antonov An-26 turboprop transport aircraft, and two MiG-31s. The ministry also reported locating a Parchim-class corvette, supply ship Bira, and a Kilo-Class (CC-750 Kashtan) diesel sub 27 nautical miles from the country's territorial waters.

    The Latvian Armed Forces regularly tweets about the presence of Russian military units near its borders. According to the NBS, Russian air and naval craft have approached Latvian borders 61 times in 2015, down from 250 times in 2014. On May 26-27, the NBS noted the presence of a Kilo-Class sub, a GS-66 hydrographic survey ship, and an An-26 outside its territorial waters.

    Earlier this month, NATO forces kicked off Saber Strike 2015, a series of large-scale US-led military exercises taking place on Russia's doorstep in Poland and the Baltic states and involving 6,000 personnel from 12 NATO countries plus Finland. Held annually since 2010, the ground, air and naval forces training exercises have been growing in terms of troop numbers and the number of countries participating over the past several years. Last year's exercises featured 4,500 troops and 10 countries. The exercises are set to conclude on Friday.

    NATO exercises and deployments near Russia since 2014
    © Sputnik
    NATO exercises and deployments near Russia since 2014
    Russia-NATO Relations Reach a New Low (121)


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    Russian Aerospace Forces, An-26, A-50, Kilo-Class submarine, MiG-31, Il-20, Latvian Armed Forces, Russian Navy, Baltic Region, Russia, Latvia
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