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International participants for large scale RAF exercise have begun arriving in the UK

International participants taking part in the long planned biannual Exercise Cobra Warrior have begun arriving in the UK to prepare for the exercise that will run during March.

Image shows RAF Typhoons rolling on the airfield.

The first aircraft from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Air Force have arrived at RAF Coningsby and RAF Waddington where they will be based for the exercise. They will shortly be joined by aircraft and personnel from the Indian, Finnish and Belgian Air forces. UK based aircraft from the United States Airforce as well as a range of RAF aircraft will also be taking part.

Image shows RAF Voyager on the airfield.

Exercise Cobra Warrior is run twice a year and is the largest air exercise run by the Royal Air Force. The exercise is designed to train participants in high intensity, large force, tactical air warfighting operations. The exercise will take place from the 2 to 24 March and will see 70 aircraft taking part and is being directed by staff at RAF Waddington.

It is wonderful once again to welcome our fellow RAF and international colleagues to RAF Waddington to participate in the world class air exercise, that is Cobra Warrior.  This biannual event provides an invaluable opportunity for international allies to train together in developing operational tactics in the air.

Group Captain Lorriman-Hughes
RAF Waddington Station Commander

Image shows Joint RAF Qatari Squadron together on the airfield.

Taking part this year for the first time are contingents from the Finnish, Indian and Royal Saudi Air Forces. The Saudis will be flying six Typhoons from RAF Coningsby. The Indian Air Force will fly five Mirage 2000.

Image shows RAF Typhoon on the airfield.

Also based at RAF Waddington will be six F-16s of the Belgian Air Force and six F-18s from the Finnish Air Force. The Finnish participation is part of a wider training activity in support of the UK led Joint Expeditionary Force, known as JEF Warrior. 

Image shows Joint RAF Qatari personnel on the airfield, with the RAF Voyager in the background.

The fast jets will be supported by RAF Voyager aircraft conducting air-to-air refuelling operations, flying from RAF Brize Norton. In addition, UK Joint Helicopter Command aircraft will be participating, basing at RAF Leeming. The RAF’s Air Mobility Force will be taking part in the exercise, with sorties including deploying elements of 16 Air Assault Brigade during an associated ground mission, that forms part of the overall exercise scenario.

Image shows personnel on the airfield, with the RAF Voyager and cargo mover vehicle.

Squadron Leader Mcfadden, the Officer Commanding 92 Squadron, runs the exercise with the RAF’s Air & Space Warfare Centre.

We are looking forward to delivering Exercise Cobra Warrior 23-1. 92 Squadron have developed a challenging Air-led multi-domain exercise focussed on pitting our NATO, Joint Expeditionary Force and International partners against a capable peer adversary within a challenging and complex environment.

Squadron Leader Mcfadden
Officer Commanding 92 Squadron

Image shows Joint RAF Qatari personnel with Typhoons on the airfield.

Over three weeks, we will bring together our capabilities and deliver the full spectrum of Air Operations, including Defensive and Offensive Counter-Air as well as Strike Operations. These will include RAF Regiment Precision Strike Teams, Air Manoeuvre operations to support ground forces, and also developing our Joint Personnel Recovery Capability.

Image shows RAF Voyager on the airfield.

Read more about Exercise Cobra Warrior

Image shows a RAF Typhoon taking off from the airfield.