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Finnish Air Force to participate in Nordic Response 24 in Norway

Air Force
Publication date 1.3.2024 9.03
Press release
Two Finnish F/A-18 Hornets, two Swedish JAS 39 Gripens and two Norwegian F-35As
Two Finnish F/A-18 Hornets, two Swedish JAS 39 Gripens and two Norwegian F-35As.

Nordic Response 24, hosted by Norway on 4‒15 March 2024, is the Finnish Defence Forces’ most important international exercise of the year. Twelve Finnish Air Force F/A-18 Hornet multi-role fighters and approximately 250 airmen will take part in the exercise.

The key objective of Nordic Response 24 for the Finnish Air Force is to develop the ability to plan and execute multinational air operations in the north as part of joint NATO operations. The Air Force will also rehearse sending a fighter detachment to Norway to operate as part of Allied air power, and providing host nation support for the Allied flying units in Finland.  

More than 100 aircraft from Finland, Sweden, Norway and other NATO member states will fly in Nordic Response 24. Aircraft involved in the exercise will involve fighter jets, air-to-air refueling tankers, transport and surveillance aircraft as well as transport and combat helicopters. Fifth generation fighters participating in the exercise will include Royal Norwegian Air Force F-35As and United States Marine Corps F-35Bs operating from Norway, and Royal Air Force F-35Bs from the aircraft carrier HMS Prince of Wales. 

Finnish F/A-18 Hornet detachment to deploy to Andøya Air Base

In total, the Finnish Air Force will send 12 F/A-18 Hornet fighters to Nordic Response 24. Eight of the aircraft will operate from Andøya Air Base in Norway. Karelia Air Wing will deploy the fighters to Norway to practise operating from an Allied air base, and receiving host nation support from the Royal Norwegian Air Force. 

Lapland Air Wing will assign the Hornets flying exercise missions from Oulunsalo, and provide host nation support for the U.S. KC-135 Stratotanker aerial refuelling aircraft and German A400M transport aircraft operating from Rovaniemi. 

The air operations will be planned at the Joint Air Operations Centre (JAOC) to be established in Norway’s Bodin, near Bodø, for the duration of the exercise. Finnish staff officers and control and reporting centre personnel will contribute to the planning and command and control of the air operations. 

The exercise missions will be carried out on 4‒15 March 2024 in the areas extending over the northern regions of Norway, Sweden and Finland. Daily air activity will take place between 10 am and 11 pm.