2017-01-15 According to a story published on the UK MoD website on January 11, 2107, Typhoons from RAF Coningsby will be based in Romania for three months in summer 2017.
This is part of the upcoming UK contributions to NATO.
UK forces have taken command of NATO’s Response Force’s Land Component and its flagship Very High Readiness Joint Task Force (VJTF), committing thousands of troops to be on standby and ready to deploy within days.
Defence Minister Earl Howe witnessed the handover to the UK’s Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (ARRC) at an official ceremony at its headquarters at Imjin Barracks, Gloucester. This includes the VJTF, a force that comprises of 3,000 British troops standing ready, supported by NATO allies, to respond to any threat to the alliance.
As the UK takes over from Spain, the 20th Armoured Brigade will lead VJTF with the 1st Battalion The Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment, the 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards, 26 Regiment Royal Artillery, 35 Engineer Regiment and 1 Logistic Support Regiment also contributing troops.
The US, Denmark, Spain, Norway and Poland will support the UK brigade, adding capabilities such as armoured infantry companies, aviation and mechanised infantry.
Further projecting our global influence, the Royal Air Force has also taken the lead in the air component of the NATO Response Force.
Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon said:
“With the Alliance’s second biggest and rising Defence budget, Britain is at the heart of NATO. In heading up the VJTF, the UK is taking another leading position in NATO and is sending a clear message that Britain is stepping up to our global defence commitments.
The UK’s Armed Forces stand ready, at a moment’s notice, to defend our allies and protect the British national interest.
Leading the NATO Very High Readiness Joint Task Force is the first of a stream of activity which will see the UK stepping up its leading role in NATO.”
Attending the official ceremony Defence Minister Earl Howe added:
“Witnessing today’s handover, it’s clear to see that our forces are ready to take the lead in the NATO alliance, one of the most important guarantors of British security.”
The UK will also deliver one of four battalions to NATO’s enhanced Forward Presence in the Baltic States and Poland, with a battalion being sent to Estonia from early 2017 and a company deployed to Poland.
In October, the Defence Secretary announced that the UK would commit RAF Typhoon aircraft to the NATO Southern Air Policing mission, offering reassurance to the Black Sea allies.
Deployed from RAF Coningsby, the Typhoons will be based at Mihail Kogălniceanu Airbase, Romania for three months in summer 2017.
According to an article published on October 26, 2016 by Irinia Popescu on Romania Insider:
The British Royal Air Force (RAF) will send Typhoon fighter jets to Romania in 2017, UK Defense Secretary Michael Fallon announced on Wednesday, October 26.
The Typhoons will be based at the Mihail Kogalniceanu Airbase in southeast Romania for up to four months next year.
“The Defence Secretary said that the UK will commit RAF Typhoon aircraft to the NATO Southern Air Policing mission to offer reassurance to the Black Sea allies. Deployed from RAF Coningsby, the Typhoons will be based at Mihail Kogalniceanu Airbase, Romania, for up to four months in 2017,” reads a statement from British Ministry of Defense.
The Typhoon aircraft will participate in missions of air police and will counter any infringement of the NATO airspace in the southeast, reports local Digi24.
The UK’s announcement comes as NATO Defense Ministers meet on October 26-27 in Brussels to discuss the plans for a strengthened NATO presence in the eastern part of the Alliance and in the Black Sea region, and Russia’s recent military activity along NATO’s borders.
UK becomes the second NATO ally that sends military equipment to Romania. US will also deploy an armored battalion in Romania in early 2017, part of its commitment to increase military presence in Eastern Europe.
Romania also hosts American troops and military gear at its Mihail Kogalniceanu airbase, close to the Black Sea port of Constanta. Romania also hosts a NATO anti-ballistic missile system at the Deveselu military base.
A NATO command center is already functional in Bucharest and a multinational NATO brigade will also be created in Craiova, southern Romania.
NATO warships have also rotated in the Black Sea regularly in the past two years, also part of the Alliance’s efforts to keep an eye on Russia’s operations in the region, after the annexation of Crimea. US destroyer USS Carney made a stop in Romania’s Constanta port on Tuesday, October 25. The destroyer is equipped with the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System.