New guardians of the Baltic

After this week’s news of the Dutch ending their shift in the Baltic Air Policing mission, full details have emerged about contries and aircraft that will guard NATO’s north eastern flank the coming months.

As reported, Belgian F-16s will take the place of the Dutch F-16s in Malbork, Poland. Italian Eurofighter Typhoons will position themselves in Šiauliai, Lithuania, replacing Portuguese F-16s. In turn MiG-29 Fulcrums from Poland will also fly to Šiauliai, relieving Canadian CF-188 Hornets.

Finaly, Spanish Air Force Eurofighter Typhoons will fly to Ämari, Estonia, where they will take the place of German Typhoons. Meanwhile a pair of Hungarian Air Force SAAB JAS 39 Gripen jets were warming up in the 2nd week of December for their upcoming deployment in Estonia from September to December 2015.

According to sources within the Baltics, the fortified NATO mission should last at least another year, following reportedly increased Russian military air activity of late.

© 2014 Airheadsfly.com editors Elmer van Hest and Marcel Burger

A Polish Air Force MiG-29 Fulcrum-A taking off from Berlin-Schönefeld during an airshow in 2008. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
A Polish Air Force MiG-29 Fulcrum-A seen during an airshow in 2008. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Head to head with Typhoon. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Head to head with an Italian Air Force Typhoon. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Belgian F-16s will guard Dutch skies and vice versa from 2016 on. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
A Belgian F-16AM. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Stick 'm up! (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Stick ‘m up! (Image © Elmer van Hest)