Royal Air Force Typhoons (RAF) deployed in Lithuania have carried out mock air attacks to test the defences of NATO warships operating in the Baltic Sea. The RAF Typhoons from 6 Squadron are currently based at Šiauliai Air Base in Lithuania, with 135 Expeditionary Air Wing, to primarily conduct the NATO Air Policing mission. In addition to this mission however the RAF are also conducting training activities and exercises with other NATO Allies and regional partners.
The Air Maritime training exercise saw the Typhoons being used to test the air defences of the Standing NATO Maritime Group 1 Task Force, commanded by Commodore Yngve Skoglund of the Royal Norwegian Navy in his flagship HNoMS Otto Sverdrup. The NATO ships were subjected to simulated air attack from high-performance fighter aircraft and air-launched anti-ship missiles.The RAF Typhoons had an unusual advantage as the pilot leading the planning for the exercise is a Royal Navy Officer on exchange with the RAF.
Having trained as a Warfare Officer before becoming a fast-jet pilot, his previous experience means he understands the challenges of both the air and maritime elements of the exercise. 135 EAW will be supporting wider NATO training activities alongside their Baltic Air Policing mission. During the tour the Typhoon pilots will be conducting Air Defence, Close Air Support and Air Combat training with NATO partners, this ensures all RAF personnel maintain their own skill levels and demonstrates the UK’s leading role in NATO and within the region.