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In a show of NATO’s commitment to bolstering its eastern defenses, two Italian F-35 fighter jets arrived at the Malbork Air Base in Poland on Wednesday. These jets, reinforced by two additional aircraft, are set to patrol the skies over NATO’s eastern flank. The Joint Air Power Competence Centre of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) stated that the deployment of Italian fighter jets in Poland showcases NATO’s capability for “flexible placement of advanced fighter aircraft.”
“Deploying fifth-generation modern fighters in Poland just six months after a similar deployment by the Royal Netherlands Air Force demonstrates NATO’s ability to flexibly position advanced combat capabilities,” said Major General Gianluca Ercolani, Chief of Staff of the Allied Air Command. “It is yet another testament to Alliance members’ integrated efforts within effective air command and control to provide significant deterrence and defense on the eastern flank,” he added.
Włoskie 🇮🇹#F35 w Polsce🇵🇱. Wspólnie wzmacniamy zdolności #NATO do odstraszania i obrony. #bezpieczenstwo #WschodniaFlankaNATO— Ministerstwo Obrony Narodowej 🇵🇱 (@MON_GOV_PL) September 14, 2023
– – – #StrongerTogether #deterrence #defence #NATO https://t.co/GtJInouP0s pic.twitter.com/P0Wnh36pAX
Col. Ciro Maschione, commander of the Italian F-35 “Task Force Air – 32 Wing,” emphasized Italy’s full commitment to supporting NATO’s enduring missions by offering its fifth-generation fighter jets. The Italian fighters will conduct familiarization flights and attain full operational capability shortly after the deployment of the remaining two F-35s. In addition to joining Polish and other NATO aircraft in Air Policing missions, they will participate in training exercises.