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Aug 30 2019

Belgian F-16 fighter aircraft arrive in Lithuania for Baltic Air Policing

Two Belgian Air Force F-16 fighter jets taxiing at Siauliai Air Base, Lithuania, where from next week on they will lead the 51st rotation of NATO's Baltic Air Policing detachment. 
Photo by Maxime Ducarme

Four Belgian Air Force F-16 fighter aircraft touched down at Siauliai Air Base, Lithuania on 29 August 2019 to take over the lead of NATO's Baltic Air Policing from the Hungarian Air Force JAS-39 fighter aircraft early next week.  

The Belgian Air Force, which back in 2004 was the first Ally to start NATO’s Baltic Air Policing mission in the region, will be the lead nation for the last four months in 2019. The official handover-takeover ceremony of the mission will take place at Šiauliai Air Base on 3 September 2019.

We never really left since the region as the upcoming deployment will be the ninth for our jets to contribute to NATO's peacetime mission here safeguarding Allied airspace.

“It is great for Belgium to be back here in the Baltics,” said Major Simon Gerard, Detachment Commander of the 60-strong Belgian F-16 detachment. “We never really left since the region as the upcoming deployment will be the ninth for our jets to contribute to NATO's peacetime mission here safeguarding Allied airspace. We look forward to working with our Danish and Czech colleagues and of course our Lithuanian hosts.”

Story by Allied Air Command Public Affairs Office

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