Britain Deploys 4 Fighter Jets to Patrol Baltic Airspace
Britain is dispatching four Typhoon fighter jets to the Baltic states of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania to help carry out NATO's air policing role in the area.
The UK fast jets will reinforce the Polish contribution to the air policing mission; a standing defensive mission undertaken by rotations of aircraft from contributing nations on a 4-month cycle.
The long-standing rotation of NATO military jets in Lithuania has recently been stepped up in response to rising tensions with Russia over Ukraine, the BBC reports.
According to the British Defense Secretary Philip Hammond, the Typhoons will provide reassurance to NATO's allies in eastern Europe and the Baltic states, the statement on the UK's Defense Ministry website said.
This Typhoon deployment comes 6 weeks after the UK Sentry E-3D aircraft, which is part of the NATO Airborne Warning and Control System Force, was deployed to Polish and Romanian airspace to provide additional reassurance to NATO's allies.
While on a visit to Bulgaria earlier in April, NATO's Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen stated that the North-Atlantic pact has increased military presence in the Baltic military airspace and has also expanded its presence in the Black Sea.
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