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RAF and Armée de l'Air joint QRA exercise

An air defence exercise has seen Royal Air Force and Armée de l'Air aircraft and Control Reporting Centres work closely together to ensure we are always ready to protect our skies.

two RAF pilots in the cockpit

Exercise Sheihan River is designed to test the resilience of UK and French air defence. In the counter-terrorist scenario a renegade aircraft was first intercepted in French controlled airspace by Mirage 2000C fighter jets. As the aircraft converged on UK controlled airspace the bi-lateral agreement with the France was invoked and close cooperation between the Control Reporting Centres of both nations ensured a seamless transition between the AdlA and RAF Typhoon fighter pilots.

Whilst the exercise is routine, this was the first occasion an intercepting French aircraft had refuelled from a RAF Voyager air-air refuelling tanker.

french aircraft refuelling from RAF voyager air to air tanker

Interoperability with key allies is vital for our operations and this exercise is the latest example of the close cooperation which exists between both Air Forces. Each remains heavily engaged the fight against violent extremist organisations and continue to operate alongside each other on operations in the Middle East and Mali.

fast jet in the air