The United States has sent a reinforced detachment of fighter planes to police the skies over NATO members Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia during a major Russian military exercise in the Baltic region next month.
The Zapad war games from Sept. 14 to 20 in Belarus, western Russia and Russia’s exclave of Kaliningrad, have caused unease in the region, though Russia has said the large-scale exercise will rehearse a purely defensive scenario and will not be a springboard for invasion.
Seven U.S. F-15C fighters landed at Siauliai airfield this week to patrol skies over the Baltic countries, three more than normally used since the NATO policing mission was upgraded after the Crimean crisis in 2014. The three Baltic states do not operate their own fighter aircraft and rely on their NATO allies for patrols. Läs artikel