Russian jets suspected of violating Finnish airspace, defense ministry says

The incursion comes as Russia says it has moved three MiG-31E warplanes equipped with Kinzhal hypersonic missiles to Kaliningrad.

By Reuters - August 18, 2022
A Russian MiG-31 fighter jet equipped with a Kinzhal hypersonic missile flies over Red Square during a rehearsal for a flypast, part of a military parade marking the anniversary of the victory over Nazi Germany in World War Two, in central Moscow on May 7, 2022. (Maxim Shemetov / Reuters)

HELSINKI — Two Russian MiG-31 fighter jets are suspected of violating Finnish airspace on Thursday morning near the coastal city of Porvoo on the Gulf of Finland, the Finnish Defense Ministry said.

The suspected violation happened at 0640 GMT and the jets were westbound, communications chief Kristian Vakkuri told Reuters, adding the aircraft were in Finnish airspace for two minutes.

“The depth of the suspected violation into Finnish airspace was one kilometer,” he said, but would not elaborate on whether the planes were escorted out.

The Finnish Air Force identified the planes and the Border Guard had already launched an investigation into the violation, the ministry statement added.

Russia’s Defense Ministry on Thursday was cited by Interfax as saying it had relocated three MiG-31E warplanes equipped with Kinzhal hypersonic missiles to its Kaliningrad region, a Russian Baltic coast exclave between Poland and Lithuania.

Reporting by Essi Lehto.