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May 23 2022

France deploys MAMBA missile defence system to bolster NATO defensive posture on eastern flank

RAMSTEIN, Germany – The deployment of the French state-of-the-art MAMBA weapons system and an air defence command post to Romania augments NATO's Integrated Air and Missile Defence (IAMD) since May 16. In a collective effort, several Allies are providing both fighter aircraft and missile systems for an increased defensive posture on the eastern flank following Russia's unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.

With the deployment of a surface-to-air missile defence system to Romania, France has further increased its forward footprint in support of NATO's enhanced vigilance towards potential threat from the East.

These deployments are critical augmentations enhancing the Alliance's IAMD posture in a changed geopolitical environment

"Besides the French deployment to Romania, Germany and the Netherlands have deployed PATRIOT batteries to Slovakia and the United States sent two PATRIOT batteries to Poland in April 2022. These deployments are critical augmentations enhancing the Alliance's IAMD posture in a changed geopolitical environment," said Brigadier General Christoph Pliet, Deputy Chief of Staff Operations at Allied Air Command that oversees NATO's air operations.

"The French MAMBA deployment shows France's capacity and will to protect her own interests as well as those of her Allies," said Colonel Pascal Ianni, French Chief of Defence Staff spokesperson. "It permits to reinforce the strategic partnership that has united France and Romania since 2007, especially in the field of air defence. The MAMBA deployment is firmly embedded in the multinational Forward Presence Battle Group which France, supported by the Netherlands and Belgium, established in Romania under NATO's aegis.

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French Armed Forces deploy the MAMBA surface based air and missile defence system to Romania. Photo Courtesy: Ministère des Armées


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The MAMBA weapons system can operate in an electronic warfare environment and is interoperable with other NATO air defence systems. Photo Courtesy: Ministère des Armées 

The MAMBA surface based air and missile defence system is operated by the French Air and Space Force as a theatre antimissile system to protect tactical sites against airborne threats, including cruise missiles, tactical ballistic missiles, manned and unmanned aircraft. The system's main components are the Aster 30 interceptor missile and the Arabel multi-function radar. MAMBA can operate in an electronic warfare environment and is interoperable with other NATO air defence systems.


NATO has further increased its readiness and vigilance in response to Russia's aggressive military incursion into Ukraine. Allies have adopted a robust and capable military posture to deter - and if required defend against – any threat to Alliance territory and populations. NATO IAMD is an essential, continuous mission in peacetime, crisis and conflict, safeguarding and protecting the Allies in this context, contributing to the Alliance's indivisible security and freedom of action.

Story by Allied Air Command Public Affairs Office

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