• Staff Report


A Russian nuclear bomber aircraft crashed Tuesday near the eastern city of Khabarovsk, a Russian report said, the second loss of a Tu-95 plane in the area in two months.

The plane — known in NATO parlance as a “Bear bomber” — was on a training flight, the Interfax news agency quoted the nation’s Defense Ministry as saying.

“The crew bailed out. The flight did not have nuclear weapons aboard,” the report quoted the ministry as saying, adding that the plane crashed in uninhabited land.

On June 9 a fire aboard a Tu-95 left one crew member dead and others injured at the Ukrainka aerodrome, which serves as a base for the bombers in Russia’s Far East.

Russia has in recent years used the Tu-95 on long-distance missions, skirting the airspaces of potential adversaries. British Prime Minister David Cameron in February characterized the planes’ appearances and Moscow’s nuclear nudging as “trying to make a point.”

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