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Allies ready to continue NATO’s Baltic Air Policing

With lead nation Portugal and augmenting nation United Kingdom half way through their deployments in support of NATO’s 41st rotation of the Baltic Air Policing (BAP) mission, new nations are getting ready to take over at the end of summer.

France is going to be the new lead nation flying four Mirage 2000-5 fighters out of the Lithuanian Air Force Air Base at Šiauliai. The deployment of the jets – normally stationed with 1/2 Fighter Squadron "Cigognes” or "Storks” at Luxeuil – will start on 31 August. This is the sixth time the French Air Force contributes to the Allied mission.

France will be augmented by Germany. Four Eurofighter jets will deploy to Ämari Air Base in Estonia for the same timeframe under the 42nd BAP rotation. For the eighth time since inception of the mission in 2004 the German Air Force assures safety and security in the Baltic skies – five times being the lead nation and three times in an augmenting role.

From September on, German Eurofighter Typhoon jets will be flying above the Baltic Sea again as they augment NATO's Baltic Air Policing mission out of Amari Air Base, Estonia. Photo by Christian Timmig, HQ AIRCOM Public Affairs Office

NATO’s Air Policing across the airspace of all Allies is a purely defensive activity preserving the integrity of that airspace. It is an important confidence building measure to demonstrate Alliance solidarity and resolve. So far, 17 NATO Allies have participated in this mission.

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