NATO Air and Maritime forces conducted an Air Defence Exercise in the Black Sea last week.
Participation included allied fighter assets from the Greek, Romanian and Turkish air forces, a NATO AWACS, a Romanian C-27 transport aircraft, a Turkish Military Patrol Aircraft and three Allied frigates from the Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 (SNMG2) – Italian Navy flagship Fasan, the Romanian Navy Regina Maria and the Turkish Navy Barbaros.
SNMG 2 forces are transiting across the Black Sea and will take part in Exercise Sea Breeze 2021 after the ADEX.
NATO say here that while initially Turkish Air Force F-16 fighters simulated attacks on the NATO ships which trained defence drills against these attacked, the Greek and Romanian F-16s, in a separate event, conducted similar training manoeuvres with the Greek fighters attacking the ships which responded in a joint manner with the Romanian fighters.
Subsequently, the Greek and Romanian fighters conducted air-to-air combat drills.
“Overall the air-maritime integration training demonstrates NATO’s capabilities, readiness and resolve to protect Allied populations; with our ships and aircraft peacefully operating off the Romanian coast we also assure the Allies in the region,” said Allied Air Command Deputy Chief of Staff Brigadier General Andrew Hansen.
“Our jets are unarmed to enable maximum training benefit and allowing for interoperability among the four Allies’ fighters,” he added.