“As Russia’s illegal war in Ukraine continues to threaten peace and security in Europe, there must be no doubt about NATO’s resolve to protect and defend every inch of Allied territory,” said NATO spokesperson Oana Lungescu. “Our AWACS can detect aircraft hundreds of kilometres away, making them a key capability for NATO’s deterrence and defence posture. I thank Romania for hosting the aircraft, which makes an important contribution to our early warning,” she added.
In response to Russia’s war in Ukraine, NATO has increased its air presence in eastern Europe with additional fighters, surveillance aircraft, and tankers. Since February 2022, NATO AWACS have conducted regular patrols over eastern Europe and the Baltic Sea region to track Russian warplanes near NATO borders.
The NATO AWACS will start reconnaissance flights, solely over Alliance territory, in the coming days. The mission is scheduled to last several weeks. The aircraft belong to a fleet of 14 NATO surveillance aircraft usually based in Geilenkirchen, Germany. Around 180 military personnel will deploy the Romanian Air Force base at Otopeni near Bucharest in support of the aircraft.