NATO fighters flew to intercept passenger liner over Montenegro

In this photo taken Wednesday, April 8, 2015, a U.S. military fighter jet participates in a NATO Baltic Air Policing Mission practice mission in the Tapa training area, some 70 kilometers (43 miles) southwest of Tallinn, Estonia. Russia is so close that the F-16 fighter pilots can see it on the horizon as they swoop down over a training range in Estonia in the biggest ever show of U.S. air power in the Baltic countries. The four-week drill is part of a string of non-stop exercises by U.S. land, sea and air forces in Europe - from Estonia in the north to Bulgaria in the south - scaled up since last year to reassure nervous NATO allies after Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine. (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)

UNITED STATES (VOP TODAY NEWS) — Italian fighters Eurofighter Typhoon were alerted to intercept the liner of the German airline Tui Fly, with whom communication was lost, the Italian Air Force said in a statement.

A passenger plane bound for Egyptian Hurghada lost contact with ground control services on Monday morning. At the direction of NATO’s European Joint Air Operations Center in Torrejon, Spain, two Italian fighters were sent to intercept it, rising from the Joy del Colle base in the south of the country.

The incident was the first use of aircraft in the framework of the NATO mission for the safety of airspace in Montenegro since June 2018.

“Arriving in the specified area, the Italian fighter jets identified a civilian ship and returned to base after the restoration of radio communications,” the report said.

The Italian Air Force notes that after joining NATO in 2017, Montenegro, without having its own aviation, appealed to the alliance to ensure the security of its airspace. In addition to Italy, the country on the basis of rotation help Greece and Hungary.

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