Russian bombers have flown 18 times through Icelandic airspace since the US military left its post in Iceland two years ago. Before that, Russian military airplanes had not been spotted around Iceland for years.
“Even though this is certainly a new position I don’t think, the way things are now, that there is reason to believe that we are being threatened by the Russians in any way,” Foreign Minister Ingibjörg Sólrún Gísladóttir told Morgunbladid.
There is nothing that prohibits the Russian military from flying through Icelandic airspace but Icelandic authorities have requested that they are notified of such flights beforehand.
Last year Russian military jets entered Iceland’s airspace on ten occasions and so far this year, Russian bombers have been spotted seven times. On six occasions Russian military aircrafts have circled Iceland.
This year cargo airplanes that are registered or manufactured in Russia have landed at Keflavík International Airport 130 times.
Airport director Stefán Thordersen said such landings are increasing as these aircraft are often carrying aid to an increasing number of conflicts.
Click here to read more about Russian military jets flying around Iceland.