Belgian F-16s to make low-altitude flights across Estonia through the week

A General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon in Belgian air force service.
A General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon in Belgian air force service. Source: EDF

NATO F-16 Fighting Falcon jets in Belgian Air Force (Composante air/Luchtcomponent) service and based at Ämari are conducting low altitude flights this week.

The flights will take place daytime, from Tuesday, January 4 to Sunday, January 9 inclusive, with flight paths in a variety of locations in Estonian airspace, predominantly over the south and east of the country.

The F-16s will fly no lower than 152m (500 feet), with weekday flights taking place from 8.00 a.m. to 4 p.m., and weekend exercises 11.00 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Estonian Defense Forces (EDF) said via a press release.

Flight-paths will generally avoid populated areas though may traverse individual farms or farmsteads.

NATO member states allocate segments of their own air space for flight exercises like this one, while the Belgian F-16s are currently holding the rotating Baltic Air Policing Mission at Ämari, having arrived at the beginning of September.

The flights will be conducted following domestic aviation law and in cooperation with the civilian air traffic and transport authorities.

The Belgians have taken part in the air policing mission at Ämari twice before, in 2016 and 2017. The mission was set up in 2014, and the sister base is at Šiauliai in Lithuania.

Estonia joined NATO in 2004.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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