The Italian Air Force’s Eurofighter Typhoons jets have concluded the execution of Nato’s enhanced Air Policing (eAP) operations in the south of Romania.
The eAP mission initially involved four Italian Eurofighter EF-2000A aircraft.
The command and control of the four aircraft was transferred to Nato’s Allied Air Command in Ramstein, Germany, through its southern Combined Air Operations Centre at Torrejón in Spain.
Task Force Air-Romania (TFA-R) commander colonel Roberto Losengo said: “Italy’s operation to strengthen Air Policing on Nato’s eastern flank in Romanian airspace began in December 2021 with the establishment of TFA-R ‘Black Storm’ at Mihail Kogălniceanu Air Base, Constanta.”
“It ended today after seven months of securing the skies in the region with our Romanian colleagues.”
In February this year, Nato decided to implement additional reassurance measures to strengthen the deterrence and defence posture at the Alliance’s eastern borders in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Following the decision, Italy doubled its air assets employed by TFA-R.
The task force comprised around 160 military personnel, majorly from the Italian Air Force.
Losengo added: “In these seven months, our team and Italian Eurofighters achieved 1,400 flight hours, generating over seven hundred sorties, over half of them flown as enhanced Vigilance Activity (eVA), Combat Air Patrol missions and about 50 alert scrambles.”
The Italian Forces also conducted Quick Reaction Alert duty together with German Eurofighters in April and flew Close Air Support missions for Romanian, Belgian, French and the US Army contingents.
Starting in August this year, the jets will continue Nato’s eAP mission in the North in Poland.