This is the first time that three nations have flown jets from the same aircraft carrier with British, American and Italian F-35B jets taking off from HMS Queen Elizabeth.
F-35B Lightning jets from the Italian carrier Cavour have landed, refuelled, and relaunched from HMS Queen Elizabeth.
HMS Queen Elizabeth is currently in the Mediterranean following months in the Indo-Pacific region as part of her global deployment. As she heads west back to the UK, the ship has continued her busy programme of working with allied nations and partners, say the Royal Navy.
🚨 NEWS | Italian jets have landed onboard a British aircraft carrier – Two Italian F-35Bs have landed, refuelled, and relaunched from HMS Queen Elizabeth. Here's the video. pic.twitter.com/1NiOlWKnkQ
— George Allison (@geoallison) November 22, 2021
The Royal Navy say that this is the third nation that has landed jets on the carrier.
“On completion of the refuelling, HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH launched an Italian Navy F-35, Italian Air Force F-35, USMC F-35 and finally an F-35B from the UK 617 squadron. The jets then operated in the skies above the two carriers developing their interoperability and mutual understanding of procedures. HMS Queen Elizabeth is the deployed flagship for Carrier Strike Group 21(CSG21). CSG21 will see the ship along with the Strike Group work with over 40 countries from around the world. The Strike Group will operate and exercise with other Countries Navies and Air Forces during the 7-month deployment.”
Jointly is the watchword: Fitting, take-off and flight in formation#F35B @ItalianNavy #F35B #32thWing🦅 @ItalianAirForce
CVL #NaveCavour🇮🇹 & CV @HMSQNLZ🇬🇧 #MediterraneanSea@LockheedMartin @thef35
📸 @ItalianNavy pic.twitter.com/YcC1ByY8Ht
— Michele Florio (@MikiAV8BHarrier) November 22, 2021
Italy is the only other NATO partner aside from the US and UK to operate that variant. The flights by the Italians mean HMS Queen Elizabeth has now hosted onboard jets from three different countries since leaving home in May, with the Italians the first European NATO partner to land on the UK flight deck.
“The fact that US, Italian and UK F-35Bs are able to fly to and from one another’s decks offers tactical agility and strategic advantage to NATO”, Royal Navy Commodore Steve Moorhouse, Commander of the UK Carrier Strike Group, was quoted as saying.