The Russian Defense Ministry says two nuclear-capable Tu-160 strategic bombers flew to its easternmost Chukotka Peninsula, just across the Bering Strait from Alaska, as part of an air force exercise. According to the ministry, it was the first time the bombers flew to Chukotka in apparent demonstration of how close Russian bombers can get to the U.S. The exercise also comes amid concern of U.S.-Russia political and military relations.
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The ministry said the air force exercise also involved the Tu-95 strategic bombers and tanker planes.
The Russian military has increased the intensity and scope of its drills amid strain in relations with the U.S. and its allies. The flight demonstrated that Russian bombers could be deployed close to the U.S.