F-16 Fighting Falcon News

RNoAF F-16s to exit Libya operations

June 10, 2011 (by Asif Shamim) - The Government of Norway has announced its plans to reduce its fighter contribution and withdrawal from Operation Unified Protector.

RNoAF F-16AM #674 is seen taxiing at Souda AB after a mission over Libya on March 25th, 2011. [NATO courtesy photo]

The RNoAF will reduce its F-16 contribution to four jets and will totally withdraw it forces from the NATO-led operation by August 1st, the government said Friday.

Defense Minister Grete Faremo said she expects understanding from NATO allies because Norway has a small air force and cannot "maintain a large fighter jet contribution for a long period."

The Norwegian government stresses in a statement that it is important that Norway continues to contribute to supporting the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1973, to protect civilians and achieve an acceptable security situation for the Libyan people.

Six Norwegian F-16's have been operating from Souda Air Base on the Greek island of Crete since March 21, 2011. The Detachment has completed more than four hundred missions over Libya.

Additional images:

RNoAF F-16AM #668 departs Souda Bay AB during a combat mission over Libya on May 11th, 2011. [RNoAF photo by Lars Magne Hovtun]

Operation Unified Protector