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Raptors return to UK

Photo: F-22A 09-4172 of the 27th FS on finals to runway 24 at Lakenheath on October 8. Ryan Dorling

 

On Sunday, October 8, the first six of a possible 12 F-22A Raptors arrived at RAF Lakenheath, Suffolk, for a temporary training deployment in Europe.

Flying with the callsigns ‘Trend 11-16’, the flight of six Raptors are from the 27th and 94th Fighter Squadrons at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia.

While the first six jets touched down in the UK on their return from a deployment in the Middle East in support of Operation Inherent Resolve, the next six Raptors are understood to be deploying across the Atlantic from the US.

According to a US Air Force press release: “while in the European theatre, the F-22s will also forward deploy from the UK to other NATO bases to maximise training opportunities, demonstrate our steadfast commitment to NATO allies and deter any actions that destabilise regional security. This Flying Training Detachment is fully funded by the European Deterrence Initiative.”

F-22s previously deployed to Europe in spring 2016, when the 95th Fighter Squadron brought 12 jets to Lakenheath.

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