NATO BaltOps 2015 Underway with firm focus on Anti-Submarine Warfare

Minot AFB B52 0018 retuns to Fairford after a BALTOPS mission (Credit N. Harding)Minot AFB B52 0018 retuns to Fairford after a BALTOPS mission (Credit N. Harding)

The annual NATO BaltOps exercise is under-way with the 2015 missions strongly focused on anti-submarine warfare. BaltOps runs from the 5th June to the 20th and features Air, Ground and Naval assets from 14 allied countries and reinforces NATO’s commitment to defend the Baltic Region.

BaltOps is lead by the US and this year has seen the basing of 3 B52-H aircraft from Minot AFB at RAF Fairford in the UK. The B52’s have been operating out of Fairford and carrying out mine-laying missions in the Baltic sea. Fairford has also seen rotations of the B2 Stealth Bomber during BaltOps in a clear demonstration of the US Air Forces Global Strike capability.

According to NATO a total of 49 ships, 61 aircraft, one submarine, and a combined amphibious landing force of 700 U.S. Finnish and Swedish troops will participate in the drills.

With Vice-Admiral James Foggo III, Commander of Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO, said “This exercise represents an important opportunity for our forces, as allies and partners, to enhance our ability to work together and strengthen capabilities required to maintain regional security,”

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