The Finnish Air Force has announced its participation in NATO’s air defense mission over Bulgaria, Romania, and the Black Sea. Finland’s Minister of Defense, Antti Heikkinen, revealed that next year, the country will contribute to NATO’s peacetime missions with a Navy ship and a maximum of eight Air Force F/A-18 Hornet fighters.

Minister Heikkinen underscored the significance of Allies actively participating in NATO’s peacetime joint defense tasks, emphasizing that such engagement signals unity and strengthens deterrence. He clarified that Finland’s involvement should be viewed as a routine operation of an Allied nation, where military resources are strategically deployed to deter and safeguard the Alliance’s interests.

The State Council is slated to present a comprehensive report to the parliament in February, outlining Finland’s commitment to NATO’s peacetime joint defense tasks. These tasks encompass aerial surveillance and armed patrol flights under the guidance of NATO’s Integrated Air and Missile Defense.

The decision to deploy Finnish fighter jets aligns with NATO’s ongoing efforts to enhance regional security and readiness. By actively participating in air defense operations, Finland aims to fulfill its responsibility for the common defense and deterrence across the entire NATO zone.

As part of these joint defense efforts, Finnish fighter jets will engage in aerial surveillance and armed patrol flights, playing a crucial role in deterring potential threats. The participation of the Finnish Air Force contributes to the broader NATO strategy of maintaining a robust and vigilant presence in critical regions.