Fighters from Germany, Hungary and Italy began patrolling the airspace of the Baltic countries as part of the NATO Baltic Air Policing mission on August 1. The German Federal Ministry of Defense announced the entry of the Air Force into service on its Twitter on Monday, August 1.
“From today, the German Air Force will take over the protection of the airspace in the Baltic countries. The Bundeswehr has been regularly participating in Air Policing since 2005 – to ensure security in international airspace and the national sovereignty of the Baltic countries,” the ministry said in a statement.
The new contingents will replace the Belgian, French and Spanish units that have been patrolling the region since April, NATO said. “At a time when European security was fundamentally changed by Russia’s war against Ukraine, fighter jets NATO ready to defend allied airspace around the clock. We are always on the alert,” the official said. representative of the North Atlantic Alliance Ohana Lungescu.
The Baltic Air Policing mission has been operating since 2004
NATO allies take turns guarding the skies over Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania since the countries joined the alliance in 2004, as the three do not have their own fighter jets. As part of the NATO mission, fighters take to the skies if foreign aircraft do not comply with flight rules or do not get in touch with air traffic controllers.
“Quick Reaction Aircraft NATO ready to take off within minutes to intercept any aircraft that could threaten allied airspace,” the alliance said. After the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the alliance further increased air patrols, the NATO statement says.