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Air Force confirms Russian jets circled US territory of Guam

tu-95.jpg

FILE: August 7, 2008: A Russian officer takes a picture of a Tu-95 bomber at a military airbase in Engels, roughly 559 miles south of Moscow.REUTERS

The Air Force confirms that two Russian bombers on Tuesday circled the U.S. island territory of Guam, prompting U.S. jets to scramble and respond. 

Two U.S. Air Force F-15 fighter aircraft, operating out of Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, intercepted the Russian Tu-95 bomber aircraft, which left in a northbound direction, said military spokeswoman Capt. Kim Bender.  

Bender said no further action was taken but declined to give more details, citing security reasons.

The incident occurred shortly before President Obama delivered his State of the Union address, as reported first by The Washington Free Beacon.

The newspaper also said the Russian bombers were equipped with nuclear-tipped cruise missiles.

The F-15s were participating in an annual exercise, Cope North, on Andersen AFB. They are stationed at the 18th Wing, Kadena Air Base, Japan, the military said.

Pacific Command forces are there to ensure air warning and control over Hawaii, Guam, and the U.S. interests in the area. PACOM maintains fighters on alert to respond quickly to any potential air threats within the Pacific area of operations, Bender said.

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