22:33 GMT +326 April 2017
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    General view of a former US naval air base and hospital in Keflavik, Iceland (File)

    Italy to Deploy Six Fighter Jets to Iceland’s Base as Part of NATO Air Mission

    © AFP 2017/ Thorvaldur Orn Kristmundsson
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    Italy will deploy six Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets to Keflavik Air Base from mid-March to mid-April in order to maintain NATO's periodic peacetime air defense presence in Iceland, the Alliance said a statement Tuesday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Keflavik Air Base is believed to be the only contribution of Iceland to NATO since the state has no standing army. The country's defenses are represented by the Icelandic Coast Guard, the National Security and Special Forces Units. There is a strong movement to withdraw from NATO in Iceland.

    This photo taken on September 22, 2016 shows a British soldier walking by a Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jet at Royal Air Force's Akrotiri base in Cyprus, before taking off for a coalition mission over Iraq.
    © AFP 2017/ Petros Karadjias
    This photo taken on September 22, 2016 shows a British soldier walking by a Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jet at Royal Air Force's Akrotiri base in Cyprus, before taking off for a coalition mission over Iraq.

    "From March 16 to mid-April 2017 the Italian Air Force is going to deploy six of its Eurofighter Typhoon fighter aircraft and a detachment of approx. 140 personnel to Iceland. The Italian detachment will be based at Keflavik Air Base, Iceland, and fly its fighter jets in support of NATO’s mission that provide Airborne Surveillance and Interception Capabilities to meet Iceland’s Peacetime Preparedness Needs," the statement of the NATO Allied Air Command said.

    Iceland formerly hosted the US Naval Air Station in Keflavik through 2006 when the United States finally closed down the base.

    Tags:
    Keflavik Air Base, NATO, Iceland, Italy
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