US B-52 Bomber
Two US Air Force B-52 will take part in a military drill in SwedenReuters

The US is to fly two B-52 Stratofortress bombers to Sweden for a military drill that Stockholm hopes is going to send a clear message to Russia amid growing tensions in the region.

The iconic aircraft will take part exercise near Ravlunda on the Swedish Baltic coast on 13 June, local media reported.

Sweden, which is not a Nato member, has witnessed first-hand spillovers from the conflict in Ukraine due to the subsequent Russian military build-up across its western border.

Stockholm's fighter jets have frequently scrambled to intercept Russian aircraft venturing provocatively close to Swedish airspace in recent months, with the last incident reported earlier this week.

The country has also lamented incursions into its territorial waters by unidentified submarines that have been widely blamed on Russia.

The resulting tensions have pushed the traditionally neutral government to lean even more towards the West.

"The main objective is to increase the different operative capabilities, but also to send clear security political signals that we do these things together with others," Major general Karl Engelbrektson said of the incoming joint military drill, according to Swedish broadcaster Sverige Radio reported, that cited local news agency TT.

"How Russia interprets that, they can decide for themselves," Engelbrektson added.

The B-52s, that came to symbolize the Cold War over its more than 60 years in service, will fly nonstop from the US and back, dropping a series of anti-ship mines in the Baltic Sea as part of the drill.

The muscle-flexing exercise is one of a series of initiative the US has undertaken to reassure European partners facing Kremlin's hostile behaviour over the last 12 months.

The small Baltic states of Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania, in particular have been pushing for a boost of Nato military presence in the area to counter possible aggressions.

Former Swedish foreign minister Carl Bildt tweeted:

Latvia is currently hosting a summit between EU leaders and former Soviet countries including Ukraine, Belarus, Georgia and Moldova.