15:02 GMT23 February 2020
Listen Live
    Military & Intelligence
    Get short URL
    0 56

    The US Air Force is contributing 900 airmen, eight F-16 fighter jets, four KC-135 Stratotanker and an E-3 AWACS aircraft to the annual two-week Baltic Operations (Baltops) exercise, according to a US Department of Defense press release on Thursday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Earlier in the day, the Polish Defense Ministry announced that the maritime drill involving 14 NATO nations had begun in Poland’s northern port city of Szczecin.

    "The exercise is designed to enhance flexibility and interoperability, to strengthen combined response capabilities, as well as demonstrate resolve among Allied and Partner Nations' forces to ensure stability in, and if necessary defend, the Baltic Sea region," the release stated.

    NATO has stepped up operations in response to tensions with Russia that developed following a US-backed coup that ousted an elected government in Ukraine — a government which had sought closer ties with Moscow.

    This year’s Baltops exercise is slated to end June 16.


    Phasing NATO Out of Arctic: Russia Arming Up Northern Fleet With New Weapons
    Turkey Turns Away From NATO to New Partner for Military Cooperation
    Turkey-NATO Rift Deepens as Alliance Stands Against Summit in Istanbul
    Baltops: Largest NATO Naval Drills in Baltic Region Kick Off in Poland
    NATO's Commitments: What About Promises to Russia?
    Divisions Within NATO Grow Over Turkish Crackdown Following Coup
    Boeing KC-135 Stratotanker, Airborne early Warning and Control System (AWACS), F-16 fighter jet, NATO, Poland, United States
    Community standardsDiscussion
    Comment via SputnikComment via Facebook