Royal Air Force (RAF) fast jets have taken to the skies as part of NATO’s mission to defend Europe in the wake of Russian forces invading Ukraine.
These aircraft are part of the pre-planned enhanced Vigilance Activity (eVA), which is a new NATO led operation initiated due to the unfolding events in Ukraine.
The RAF contribution is in the form of additional Typhoon FGR4 aircraft, operating from RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire and RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus. The Typhoons, armed with air-to-air missiles and a full suite of defensive aids, are patrolling NATO airspace over Poland and Romania.
The UK defense ministry announcement on the support to the eVA comes just two weeks after Romanian Land Forces Command finalized the necessary activities for declaring the initial operational capability (IOC) of the NATO battlegroup to be established in Romania as part of the allied eVA.
“The establishment of the NATO eVA represents a decisive message of cohesion and solidarity,” the alliance said in an earlier announcement.
“These measures increase the readiness, deter aggression, and clearly demonstrates NATO’s firm commitment to the defense of all allies.”
Royal Air Force Typhoons are supported by RAF Voyager air-to-air refueling aircraft from RAF Brize Norton, who offer additional fuel for the fighters so enabling greater range and endurance to support the mission.