During his speech, LAW09 Exercise Director, Brigadier General Baron, who is the Commander of the Joint Force Air Component Command normally based at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, thanked the Host Nation Sweden for hosting the exercise in the marvelous Nordkalotten region. “NATO greatly values its strong relationship with Sweden as a member of the Alliance Partnership for Peace programme,” said General Baron, “the Alliance views Sweden as an integral and proactive partner towards 21st century security and stability.” According to him, LAW09 enhances the ability to operate together, promoting security and freedom in today’s complex world. General Baron also underlined that a live flying exercise requires serious discipline. “Every one of us wants to get the best training out of this flying exercise,” he explained, “and this must be accomplished within the boundaries of flight safety rules and regulations.”
Colonel Per Nilsson, the Commanding Officer of F21 Norrbotten Wing, welcomed the participants on behalf of the Chief of Staff of the Swedish Air Force, Major General Anders Silwer, to what he called a great exercise area that satisfies all operational requirements. “We are happy to be hosting you,” the colonel added, “and we hope you will find the participation in LAW09 rewarding.” He considered it crucial to exercise together since several of the participating countries were conducting or are on alert for international operations. According to the colonel air power will continue to play an important role in today’s and tomorrow’s military operations.
From Monday, 8 June, LAW09 will involve fighter and transport aircraft as well as rotary wing aircraft from NATO nations Germany, Italy, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States of America and the Partnership for Peace members Sweden and Finland will conduct air operations in the skies above the Nordkalotten area under a fictitious peace-enforcing scenario. More than fifty aircraft will be conducting combined air operations. Several aircraft are also preparing for the upcoming NATO Response Force stand-by period, during which NATO’s Ramstein-based Air Component Command will be charged with providing command and control for a multinational air component.
LAW09 will run until 16 June. Participating aircraft will have ample opportunity to train together at the northern edge of Europe to enhance interoperability of NATO and PfP air forces.