Bangkok – A group of German Air Force fighter jets sent them flying to Southeast Asia in just 24 hours, some 12,800 kilometers (8,000 miles) from their home base, in a marathon bid near Singapore on Tuesday.
comes in times of increased tension between exercises China And the US and its allies demonstrate the ability to quickly transfer air power over Taiwan and into the region for a European nation.
The European Union in September unveiled a new strategy to boost economic, political and defense ties in the Indo-Pacific. German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht told reporters that despite war in Ukraine being a priority at the moment, the Eurofighter mission underscores that Asia has not been forgotten.
“We are on the side of all those who stand up for our values, such as democracy, freedom and security, and are also ready to contribute,” she said, as the plane took off Monday from Neuberg, Germany, DPA reported the news agency.
“At the moment our focus is naturally on the eastern side, for which Russia’s brutal aggression is to blame, but we have to keep an eye on other areas as well.”
Part of the EU’s new strategy for the Asia-Pacific is focused on improving maritime security and ensuring safe passage by sea routes, and several European countries have sent naval assets to the region for maneuvers this year.
As China has become more vocal in this area, the United States, Britain and others have also made it an increasingly priority.
Germany sent a Bayern battleship to the region on a nearly seven-month deployment that ended earlier this year, marking the first time a German warship had been in the Indo-Pacific for nearly two decades. It participated in joint exercises with allies which include AustraliaSingapore, Japan And a port call in the United States, and China, was refused.
Involved in the present exercise were six multirole Eurofighter jets along with four transport aircraft and three tankers. They were refueled in the air during long flight, and also made stops along the way for the pilots to refuel, observe and rotate.
While stopping at a base near Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates on Tuesday, Germany’s air force, the Luftwaffe, said technical problems were found in two Eurofighters. One was rectified on site but the other had a hydraulic system failure and was stopped.
The Luftwaffe said that personnel from Germany were sent for further repairs so that it would be available for upcoming exercises in Australia, where all aircraft are headed after Singapore.
The so-called Pitch Black exercise is bringing together about 2,500 personnel and 100 aircraft from around the world for three weeks in Australia’s Northern Territory.
In addition to Germany, European NATO members France, Britain and the Netherlands are participating along with the United States, New Zealand, Korea, the United Arab Emirates, India, Japan, Thailand and others.
The exercise is designed to test and improve multinational force integration, and “to promote strong ties to Australia and the high value we place on regional security and closer ties throughout the Indo-Pacific region.” It is,” the Royal Australian Air Force said.
August 19-September onwards. 8 exercises in Australia, German jets are scheduled to stop in Japan and South Korea for their way back home.
This story corrects the distance covered by the planes.