Turkish F-16 fighter aircraft currently conducting NATO’s enhanced Air Policing in Malbork, Poland, conducted aerial manoeuvres with a Polish Air Force C-295M Casa transport aircraft on August 26 to fine-tune their skills and honing their capabilities through Allied cooperation. The Polish C-295M, with a dozen of international journalists on board, took off from Malbork, Poland, to join the aerial training session of Turkish fighter jets in the skies above eastern Poland. The international photographers had the chance to see and document first-hand the precision and professionalism involved in Allied aerial operations.
“We appreciate this great opportunity to fly with our Polish colleagues and to practice precision manoeuvres, formation flying and escort procedures. It is a challenge to plan, coordinate and execute such an activity that benefits my pilots and their Polish counterparts. They have the chance to train and exercise procedures for combined employment in support of the Alliance’s mission to provide deterrence, defence and security,” said Colonel Ahmet Çandir, the Detachment Commander of 80 Turkish Air Force members at Malbork augmenting NATO’s Air Policing mission in the Baltic region.
“Team Malbork has an excellent track record of contributing to NATO’s Air Policing. Since 2014, we have hosted Allied fighter detachments from France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Portugal and now Turkey supporting NATO Assurance Measures in the region,” said Lieutenant Colonel Jerzy Goleniowski, Deputy Base Commander at Malbork. “Polish MiG-29 from Malbork were deployed to the Baltic Air Policing mission in Lithuania, where we benefited from receiving host nation support. It is great to see that we are now building on our experience that has enabled us to embed and support fighter detachments in Poland,” he added.
Since mid-August four Turkish F-16 fighters have been deployed at Malbork demonstrating NATO cohesion and integration with the Polish Air Force MiG-29 fighters at the base. After conducting aerial drills, the Turkish fighters escorted the C-295M back to Malbork. They conducted a formation overflight of the base and safely landed before it returned to its home base at Krakow. Until mid-September, the Turkish F-16 detachment will continue their NATO mission at Malbork. They continuously contribute to safe guarding Allied skies in the region while the 80-strong team and their four jets are stationed here. Once this deployment is finished, they will redeploy to Band?rma 6th Main Jet Base in the northwest of Turkey.