06 Nov 2019

RAF Typhoon fighters exercise with USAF B52 bombers

Royal Air Force Typhoon fighter jets based at RAF Coningsby have exercised with visiting US B-52 bombers for the second time this year.

The RAF aircraft carried out a practice intercept, giving both the RAF and USAF aircrew the opportunity to exercise with each other.

Air Officer Commanding 11 Group, Air Vice-Marshal Ian Duguid, said: “We have a longstanding and rewarding partnership with the United States Air Force having worked successfully together on operations and exercises and as part of NATO. That success is built on mutual respect and cooperation”.

He added: “The RAF is involved in operations with partners around the world and our commitment to the NATO alliance remains as steadfast as ever.”

This training exercise with the B-52 is the latest in a series of air integration training opportunities that have seen RAF and USAF aircraft operating together training to fly missions in a hostile air environment and marks a shift away from the counter-insurgency operations that have been conducted in recent years.

The Typhoons from RAF Coningsby carry out a range of duties including Quick Reaction Alert interceptions of foreign or suspicious aircraft entering UK airspace. The aircraft have also recently returned from Estonia where they conducted the NATO Baltic Air Policing mission.

Baltic Air Policing is a peacetime collective defence mission that safeguards the integrity of NATO Alliance members’ airspace. It is the visible augmentation of our Eastern allies’ airpower capability and highlights the UK’s commitment to NATO’s capability, vigilance and interoperability.

The Typhoon Force is also committed to operations in the Middle East, deployed to the Falklands and will soon be conducting Air Policing tasks from Iceland; the RAF’s first operational deployment to Iceland since the Second World War.

image © Crown Copyright

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