21 Nov 2019

RAF jets arrive in Iceland for NATO policing mission

RAF Typhoons have arrived in Iceland for their contribution to the NATO Icelandic Air Policing Mission.

RAF jets will spend a month leading the NATO Icelandic Air Policing Mission from Keflavik airbase. Following the mission the 1(Fighter) Squadron jets will return to RAF Lossiemouth.

The mission is being conducted by NATO allies on request from Iceland, which does not have its own air force. This will be the first time the UK has contributed and the first time in 10 years that the RAF has been deployed to Iceland.

Air Officer Commanding 1 Group RAF Air Vice Marshal Harv Smyth said: “I am proud to see RAF Typhoon Fighters deploying once more to support and defend one of our Allies as part of our on-going commitment to NATO. This deployment is primarily designed to offer re-assurance to our friends, nevertheless, I am confident the Typhoons will secure the Icelandic skies in the same way as we do 24/7 365 at home.”

“Their presence makes clear to Allies that we stand by our NATO commitments, of which this is just one of many we offer to the Alliance in order to help preserve Euro-Atlantic security.”

RAF Typhoons were deployed to Estonia earlier this year for NATO Baltic Air Policing. The UK leads a multinational battlegroup in Estonia for Nato’s Enhanced Forward Presence (eFP).

As well as providing around 900 personnel in Estonia the US-led eFP Battlegroup in Poland is supported by a smaller light cavalry. The Iceland mission aims to provide a force to offer reassurance and protect the country’s airspace from any hostile actors.

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