The Finnish Air Force has intensified its aerial campaign over the international waters of the Gulf of Finland and the Baltic Sea near the country’s airspace.
The military aircraft flight activities over the Baltic Sea and the Gulf of Finland have increased over the last few days, according to the statement posted on the Finnish Air Force website.
The Finnish Air Force's F/A-18 Hornet multi-role fighters have been placed on Quick-Reaction Alert (ORA) duty to identify and photograph the Russian military aircraft observed in the international airspace in the vicinity of Finland.
Images captured include Beriev A-50, Ilyushin Il-22, Sukhoi Su-24, Sukhoi Su-27, Sukhoi Su-34, and Tupolev Tu-160 aircraft.
The airforce, which serves as a territorial surveillance authority, is responsible for monitoring and safeguarding Finland's territorial integrity.
It employs a variety of tools such as mobile and fixed air surveillance radars as well as other sensors located across the country to monitor territorial integrity that extends hundreds of kilometres beyond the nation's borders.
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If an airborne target is detected within or approaching Finnish airspace and cannot be identified by flight plan correlation using data from civilian air traffic control agencies or by other available information, the Air Operations Centre (AOC) may scramble a fighter to intercept and identify the traffic.
The Finnish Air Force directs an unidentified aircraft that intercepted in Finnish airspace to reverse its course or land, or may warn the aircraft either by radio or by firing a warning burst.
Image: Finnish Air Force F/A-18 and Sukhoi Su-24s. Photo: courtesy of the Finnish Air Force.