Home  /  Newsroom  /  2022  /  Hungarian Gripen aircraft continue NATO mission in Baltic Sea Region

Jul 29 2022

Hungarian gripen aircraft continUE nato MISSION IN bALTIC sEA REGION

RAMSTEIN, Germany - On July 29, in an official ceremony at Šiauliai Air Base, Lithuania, the responsibility of NATO's Baltic Air Policing (BAP) mission was handed over from Spain and Czech Republic, to Hungary who will be leading the 60th rotation in the next four months.

With their rotation completed, the Spanish Air Force has now supported NATO's BAP mission five times, two times as lead nation operating out of Šiauliai and three times as augmenting nation operating out of Ämari, Estonia. 

As Hungarian Gripen fighters are now responsible for safeguarding the skies under a NATO banner, the five Czech Gripen aircraft and service staff currently deployed to Šiauliai will remain in Šiauliai  as an augmenting nation to conduct Air Patrols in support of NATO's Air Shielding along the eastern flank.

In light of the worst military aggression in Europe for decades, this ceremony is of great importance
"In light of the worst military aggression in Europe for decades, this ceremony is of great importance for two reasons – it showcases NATO's strength and cohesion and it demonstrates impressively that Allies continue to stand by each other to provide meaningful deterrence. Only by being resolute in the face of aggressive actions will we ensure lasting security and stability for Europe," said Brigadier General David Morpurgo, Deputy Commander, Deployable Air Command and Control Centre, Poggio Renatico, Italy.
_nato2
In addition to the Air Policing mission, Spain provided enhanced Vigilance  Activities conducting Border Patrols above the three Baltic States or  Combat Air Patrols in Poland. Photo by Antanas Gedrimas, Lithuanian Air Force
_nato3
Brigadier General David Morpurgo, Deputy Commander, Deployable Air Command and Control Centre, Poggio Renatico, Italy. Photo by Antanas Gedrimas, Lithuanian Air Force
_nato4
Hungarian Gripen fighters are now responsible for safeguarding the skies under a NATO banner. Photo by Antanas Gedrimas, Lithanian Air Force
_nato2
A Hungarian Gripen fighter aircraft at Šiauliai Air Base, Lithuania. Photo by Antanas Gedrimas, Lithuanian Air Force

"In addition to the Air Policing mission, we provided enhanced Vigilance Activities conducting Border Patrols above the three Baltic States or Combat Air Patrols in Poland, offering to NATO an immediate armed response," said Lieutenant Colonel David Soto Martínez, the Spanish Detachment Commander. "We have also performed training missions and participated in exercises with other allied Nations, demonstrating the Joint and Combined interoperability of Spanish assets within NATO," he added.

Effective immediately, Hungary is leading the BAP mission. Five Hungarian Gripen aircraft and more than 80 service members from the Hungarian Defence Forces' 59th Szentgyörgyi Dezső Air Base in Kecskemét, Hungary. They will continue the mission until November to ensure the safety of Allied airspace in the Baltic Sea region.

"Hungary is taking part in the Baltic Air Policing mission for the third time. It's a proof of allied solidarity and demonstrates the commitment of the Allies. We are all fully prepared, determined, vigilant and ready to safeguard the skies over Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, providing a swift response to any security threat in the region together with our German and Italian comrades," said the Hungarian Detachment Commander, Lieutenant Colonel Attila Ványik.

The Baltic Air Policing mission is more important than ever. At a time when European security has been fundamentally altered by Russia's war against Ukraine, NATO fighter jets remain ready around the clock to protect Allied airspace

Story by Allied Air Command Public Affairs Office

Search our content:

Address

HQ Allied Air Command
Flugplatz Ramstein
66877 Ramstein-Miesenbach
Germany

Media Operations

Public Affairs Office
Building/Gebäude 313
66877 Ramstein-Miesenbach
Germany