Eight F-35s will deploy to Malbork, Poland, in February and March 2023 to join NATO’s mission to reinforce the defensive posture along the eastern flank. Four fifth-generation fighters will be used to monitor the skies over the region. At the same time, the other four will conduct training exercises with the Allies, ready to reinforce the defensive mission when necessary.
With these eight modern combat aircraft, the Netherlands contributes to NATO’s Air Surveillance and Armor missions over the Baltic.
“With these eight modern combat aircraft, the Netherlands is contributing to NATO air policing and air protection missions to deter and, if necessary, defend Allied territory in the Baltic region,” said Lieutenant Colonel Guido Schools. , commander of the F-35 detachment of the Netherlands.
“We are also reassuring our allies and demonstrating our commitment to the NATO Alliance,” he added.
The Netherlands regularly contributes to allied air police missions.
F-16s from the Belgian Air Force have been working alongside their Dutch counterparts to keep the skies over the BENELUX region safe since 2017.
They sent F-16s to Malbork, Poland, in 2014, right after the Russian invasion of Crimea, and to Siauliai, Lithuania, in 2005 and 2017 to aid the Baltic Air Police. On the south-eastern flank, the Netherlands completed a two-month deployment of F-35s to Bulgaria in May.
Although deployed to Marlbork, the Netherlands is part of the current rotation of three other allies operating fighters outside the Baltic region: Poland and France fly F-16S and Rafale fighters from Siauliai, Lithuania, and Germany launches its Eurofighters from Ämari. , Estonian.