The Spanish Air Force has deployed six Eurofighter multi-role combat aircraft to support Nato’s Enhanced Air Policing (EAP) missions.
Under the two-month deployment, the Spanish fighter detachment will be stationed at Mihail Koglaniceanu Air Base on Romania’s Black Sea coast.
The Eurofighters along with 130 personnel will fly patrol missions alongside the Romanian Air Force.
They will fly in the Romanian airspace until the end of March.
The latest event marks the SAF’s first deployment to the south-east of Nato’s territory.
In cooperation with the Romanian Air Force, the Spanish detachment will ‘demonstrate Alliance solidarity and cohesion on the Black Sea shores’.
EAP is part of Nato’s Assurance Measures, which were introduced in 2014 to showcase Nato’s defensive nature and deter Russia after the illegitimate annexation of the Crimean Peninsula.
Nato’s Allied Air Command said in a statement: “Since its inception, Canada, Italy, Portugal and the United Kingdom have conducted enhanced Air Policing deployments.
“The dual benefits for Allied nations involved in enhanced Air Policing is establishing training and operational relations with the Romanian Air Force and protecting Alliance airspace on the Black Sea together.”
In addition to patrolling the national airspace under Nato’s Combined Air Operations Centre (CAOC) at Torrejón in Spain, the Spanish Air Force conducted seven deployments in support of Nato’s air policing mission in the Baltic States under the control of the Uedem’s CAOC in Germany.
In October, the Spanish Air Force took delivery of the first NH90 helicopter from NHIndustries and its partners, Airbus Helicopters, Leonardo and Fokker.