Dutch fighters began patrolling the skies over the Baltic as part of NATO mission

As of the 5th of January, F-16 fighter Falcons from the Netherlands Air Force began patrolling the air space of the NATO member Baltic States, as reported on the website of the Defense Ministry of Lithuania.

As reported in the statement, four aircraft from the air forces of the Netherlands, based at the airbase in Šiauliai, will replace French aircraft which patrolled the skies over the Baltic during the last four months. It is also reported that it is the third rotation of aircraft of the Royal Air Forces of the Netherlands as part of the NATO air policing mission in the Baltic States.

The first of these missions was in 2005 at the Šiauliai airbase, the second one was in 2014 at the Malbork airbase in Poland.

The Defense Ministry of Lithuania explained that the NATO air policing mission in the Baltic States started in March 2004, after Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania joined NATO.

Today 17 NATO allies have already taken part in the mission, deploying air forces and the means for carrying out the mission. So far, there have been 43 rotations.

  Lithuania, Netherlands, Baltic States, NATO, Aircraft