October 16, 2014 (by Asif Shamim) - Danish F-16s have this morning been in action in the skies over Iraq. The jets are deployed to Ahmed Al Jaber air base in Kuwait to support the fight against the terrorist organization Islamic State (IS).
"The aircraft took part in an operation against Iraq
, in close cooperation with coalition partners. Our people have made a dedicated and highly professional efforts to get ready, and I am very pleased that the Danish F-16 contribution is now an active part in the international coalition fighting against the Islamic State," said Defense Minister Nicolai Wammen.
"It will not be an easy fight. It is also not safe. But it is a fight we can not fail to be involved in, and the Danish pilots, along with the rest of the crews are both well trained and experienced."
A total of two Danish fighter planes took part in the US-led operation and would engage IS forces in Iraq, if it became necessary in the ongoing fighting. However during this mission the Danish aircraft were not called into engage targets and no weapons were used. The jets gathered useful intelligence for friendly forces on the ground and in the air.
The Danish contribution to the coalition force massed against IS includes four operational F-16s and three in reserve, with up to 140 military personnel.
The decision to send the Danish aircraft to join the multinational force to fight IS was taken by a large majority in the Danish parliament on Thursday, October 2nd.