Royal Air Force (RAF) Eurofighter Typhoons from 12 Squadron have arrived in Qatar for Exercise Fox Defender. In the year that the UK and Qatar celebrate 50 years of official diplomatic relations, more than 120 RAF personnel have deployed to Qatar to work alongside their Qatari counterparts. Pilots and engineers from both nations will fly and maintain the Typhoon throughout the exercise. The pilots will be challenged to a range of air to air and ground to air training serials to further enhance interoperability with the Qatar Emiri Air Force.Personnel from the RAF and Qatar Emiri Air Force will work side by side in a joint training exercise, strengthening the close ties between both nations. Qatar and the UK share mutual interests in ensuring stability in the Middle East. Joint operational training on Exercise FOX DEFENDER and Exercise SOARING FALCON will boost Qatar’s ability to tackle mutual security challenges which helps protect the prosperity and security of both nations.
Wing Commander Wright Officer Commanding 12 Squadron said,”It is fantastic to be back in Qatar once more. Every year we see the cityscape of Doha develop and the Qatar Emiri Air Force continues to grow at an equally impressive pace. Similarly, the Joint Squadron has grown since we were here last year, with our team of newly qualified Qatar Emiri Air Force technicians working seamlessly and with visible pride alongside their RAF and BAE Systems colleagues. We are looking forward to everything Exercise Fox Defender has to offer over the coming weeks.”
12 Squadron is a joint RAF and Qatar Emiri Air Force Typhoon Squadron, based at RAF Coningsby. Exercise FOX DEFENDER will enable the Qatar Emiri Air Force to train in their home nation alongside the RAF, who have valuable experience of operating the Typhoon aircraft. This exercise will support the Qatar Emiri Air Force operational capability ahead of receiving their Typhoon aircraft in 2022. A RAF Voyager deployment will support the exercise later this month as part of Exercise SOARING FALCON. The Voyager Tanker will conduct air to air refuelling sorties with both 12 Squadron the Qatar Emiri Air Force’s fast jet fleet. The Voyager deployments will provide an important training opportunity for both Air Forces, enhancing their interoperability and joint operational training.
The Eurofighter Typhoon is a multinational twin-engine, canard delta wing, multirole fighter. The Typhoon was designed originally as an air superiority fighter nd is manufactured by a consortium of Airbus, BAE Systems and Leonardo that conducts the majority of the project through a joint holding company, Eurofighter Jagdflugzeug GmbH. The NATO Eurofighter and Tornado Management Agency, representing the UK, Germany, Italy and Spain, manages the project and is the prime customer. The Eurofighter Typhoon is a highly agile aircraft, designed to be a supremely effective dogfighter in combat. Later production aircraft have been increasingly better equipped to undertake air-to-surface strike missions and to be compatible with an increasing number of different armaments and equipment, including Storm Shadow and Brimstone missiles. The Typhoon entered operational service in 2003 and is now in service with the air forces of Austria, Italy, Germany, the United Kingdom, Spain, Saudi Arabia and Oman. Kuwait and Qatar have also ordered the aircraft.