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US Raptors arrive in Northern Territory

f   raptor aircraft

A squadron of United States Air Force (USAF) F-22 Raptors arrived in Australia on Friday ahead of the first Enhanced Air Cooperation (EAC) activity under the US Force Posture Initiatives.

The visiting F-22s will be located at Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Base Tindal in Katherine, Northern Territory, and are the largest and longest rotation of fifth-generation aircraft to Australia to date.

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Minister for Defence Marise Payne said, "The F-22s will conduct integrated training activities with the Royal Australian Air Force’s 75 Squadron F/A-18A/B Hornets along with ground assets and personnel.

"The EAC aims to strengthen bilateral collaboration and interoperability with the United States."

The commencement of the EAC activities in 2017 will continue to strengthen Australia and America's close air-to-air relationship, according to Minister Payne.

"The EAC will build on a range of air exercises and training activities already undertaken between Australia and the United States," Minister Payne said.

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"While EAC will see an increase in training, it will be on a short-term rotational basis using Australian facilities."

The F-22s and RAAF F/A-18A/B Hornets will also conduct short training visits to Townsville.

The F-22s will also be on public display at the Australian International Airshow in Avalon.

The commencement of EAC activities will be followed by the sixth rotation of US Marine Corps personnel to Darwin.

The 2017 rotation, arriving in Darwin in April, is forecast to be the most complex Marine Air Ground Task Force deployed to Australia.

Approximately 1,250 Marines and up to 13 aircraft, including four MV-22 Ospreys, will create opportunities for more complex and sophisticated training activities.

 

US Raptors arrive in Northern Territory
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