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Russian nuclear-capable bombers fly over Caribbean Sea

December 12, 2018
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FILE - In this Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2005 file photo, a supersonic Tu-160 strategic bomber with Russian President Vladimir Putin aboard flies above an airfield near the northern city of Murmansk. The Russian military says two of its nuclear-capable strategic bombers have arrived in Venezuela, a deployment that comes amid soaring Russia-U.S. tensions. (Alexei Panov, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP, File)

MOSCOW (AP) — The Russian military says two of its nuclear-capable strategic bombers have flown over the Caribbean Sea during a 10-hour training mission.

A pair of Tu-160 bombers arrived at Maiquetia airport outside Caracas Monday. The Russian Defense Ministry said they were escorted by Venezuelan fighter jets during part of the training mission on Wednesday to practice interaction.

The Tu-160 is capable of carrying conventional or nuclear-tipped cruise missiles with a range of 5,500 kilometers (3,410 miles).

The Russian bombers’ deployment came as Russia-U.S. relations have worsened because of the allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election and other issues.

Russia has bristled at U.S. and its NATO allies deploying troops and weapons near its borders.

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