Russia's nuclear bombers have been spotted near the border with Finland. Satellite images show TU-160 and TU-95 at the Olenya airbase. These aircraft are capable of carrying nuclear weapons.
Israeli intelligence firm ImageSat International detected an "irregular presence" of Russian TU-160 and TU-95 strategic bombers at the Olenya airbase. Four TU-160s were seen at the base on August 21 and three TU-95s were seen on September 25, reported The Sun.
Irregular Presence Of Russian TU-160 And TU-95 Detected
"The system indicates that Engels air base is the possible departure point of the strategic bombers detected in Olenya airbase," according to ImageSat International.
Engels air base is home to Russia's only strategic bombers stationed near Ukraine and is the home base for the 121rst Heavy Bomber Aviation Regiment (121 TBAP) that flies the TU-160s and TU-95, according to The Jerusalem Post.
Olenya Airbase Is A Strategic Base
These Russian bombers are able to carry strategic nuclear weapons and cruise missiles and have played a key role since the beginning of the Ukraine war in February.
Russia's bomber TU-95 is considered a silver giant of the skies and NATO finds it and is known to NATO by the codename Bear. The aircraft is a 4-engine turboprop bomber. The aircraft was first introduced in 1956 and is believed to be equivalent to the US B-52 bomber. It can carry six nuclear missiles within its payload.
Tu-95V Can Carry Hydrogen Bombs
The Tu-95V was intended to carry large hydrogen bombs as these bombs were not made operational by the end of the 1950s.
The airbase is also thought to be safely out of reach of the Ukrainian army. The Olenya airbase is considered as a safe option as it's out of reach of the Ukrainian army.
For the past many decades, Russia has used the base as a deployment field for its airforce. Olenya is also considered a staging base to carry out nuclear strikes against the US.