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October 13, 2021

RAF Typhoons fly with Egyptian Air Force in first exercise in 20 years

Dubbed Bright Star 21, the exercise is hosted by the Egyptian Air Force.

British Royal Air Force (RAF) Typhoons that are currently deployed in the Eastern Mediterranean as part of 903 Expeditionary Air Wing (EAW) have taken part in the Bright Star 21 exercise.

For the first time in 20 years, RAF Typhoons flew over Egypt, alongside the Egyptian Air Force.

The exercise is hosted by the Egyptian Air Force.

Greek Air Force’s F-16s and US Air Force’s (USAF) F-15s, F-16s, C-130 Hercules and B-52s also joined the Typhoons during the exercise.

RAF 903 Expeditionary Air Wing commanding officer wing commander ‘Dutch’ Holland said: “Exercises such as Ex BRIGHT STAR 21 are vital as we develop and maintain interoperability with our coalition partners if the RAF is to be truly effective on operations throughout the Middle East.

“Flying with other airforces requires extensive planning and the contributions of 903 Expeditionary Air Wing personnel have ensured that the exercise was safely and successfully completed.”

According to RAF, most of the participating jets flew from Cairo West Air Base in Egypt, while RAF Typhoons flew from RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus.

RAF Typhoons were supported by an RAF Voyager, which provided air-to-air refuelling (AAR). RAF Voyager also flew from RAF Akrotiri.

RAF 83 Expeditionary Air Group commanding officer air commodore Simon Strasdin said: “I was delighted to be hosted by the Egyptians during this important exercise with regional partners.

“Aside from the great experience of training and flying with other nations, it is essential that we continue to play an active role in the stability of the region and demonstrate our commitment to the Middle East.”

BRIGHT STAR exercise is hosted in Egypt every two years. It is run in cooperation with the USAF.

The latest iteration of the exercise took place in the north-west of Egypt.

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