RAF Typhoons fly to Estonia as Nato boosts forces in Eastern Europe in face of Russian aggression

Britain is strengthening its military­ force in Estonia to deter Russian aggression.

Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon says two RAF Typhoons are being deployed to the Baltic state as part of Nato’s Enhanced Forward Presence mission.

They will join 800 British troops sent in March amid concerns about Russia’s “assertive” foreign policy goals.

Sir Michael said: “The UK is stepping up its commitment to Nato, nowhere more clearly than in the Baltic.

“We are standing shoulder to shoulder with our allies in the face of any potential threats and thereby demonstrating our unwavering­ commitment to the security of Europe.”

The jets have a top speed of more than 1,500mph

Squadron Leader Paul Hanson, a Typhoon pilot based at RAF Coningsby, Lincs, said: “The Typhoons are no stranger to the Baltics, we have conducted air policing to secure Nato airspace in the region a number of times.

“We will be working closely with the British Army and our allies to improve inter-operability.”

Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon

The jets, back from Romania, were due to be greeted in Estonia today by armed forces minister Mark Lancaster.

Earlier this year troops from the 5th Battalion The Rifles and around 300 Army vehicles, including Challenger 2 tanks, joined French and Danish forces in the country.

And other countries have sent troops to Latvia, Poland and Lithuania as part of Nato’s Enhanced Forward Presence battalion which aims to deter any hostile activity against members of the alliance­.

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