LONDON – A London-based think tank says Russian forces have been involved in dozens of close encounters with Western militaries since Moscow annexed Crimea — and that both sides risk losing control over events.
A study by the European Leadership Network released Monday offers details on 40 incidents and says that they add up to a disturbing pattern over a wide geographic area.
It singles out three incidents in the last eight months as being particularly high risk: a near-collision between a SAS civilian airliner and a Russian surveillance plane; the abduction of an Estonian intelligence officer and a Swedish submarine hunt.
Tensions have been high since Russia's annexation of the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine in March. Alliance pilots have conducted 100 intercepts this year — three times more than in 2013.