German Fighter Jets Arrive In S’pore En Route To Australia For Military Exercises

German Fighter Jets Land In Singapore On 16 Aug After 24-Hour Journey

Five German fighter jets made a marathon 24-hour journey from Bavaria to Singapore, landing at Changi Airport on 16 Aug.

It was the first time that Luftwaffe jets were deployed to the Indo-Pacific region, as they embarked on a 10,000km flight within just a day.

The fighter jets were en route to Australia and will make stops in Japan and South Korea besides Singapore.

Source: @NATO_AIRCOM on Twitter

One of them donned a commemorative livery, featuring the flags of Germany, Singapore, Australia, South Korea, and Japan.

Petra Sigmund, Director General for Asia and the Pacific of Germany’s foreign office, called the deployment the country’s contribution to “rules-based international order”.

German fighter jets take 24-hour flight to Singapore

The German air force deployment includes the following:

  • about 250 soldiers
  • four A400M transport aircraft
  • three A330s of the Multirole MRTT Unit from Eindhoven (to refuel the fighter jets in the air)

It’ll participate in multinational exercises hosted by the Australian armed forces, dubbed Pitch Black. Allies include France, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, the United States, and regional partners.

Source: @NATO_AIRCOM on Twitter

They’ll also support the Australian navy in Exercise Kakadu and return to Germany in October.

German air force chief Lieutenant General Ingo Gerhartz said in a news release:

We are sending a clear message: the Air Force can be deployed quickly and over global distances – even with several missions to be fulfilled in parallel.

Deployment comes amid US-China tensions

It’s difficult to ignore the timing of the German fighter jets’ deployment, amid escalating tensions between the US and China.

First, US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited Taiwan on 2 Aug, followed by five US lawmakers 12 days later.

US Lawmakers Arrive In Taiwan 12 Days After Pelosi Trip, Beijing Announces More Military Drills

China conducted military drills around Taiwan following both visits and condemned the apparent efforts to undermine the ‘One China’ policy.

Germany’s strongly-worded statement on deterrence and defence in the Indo-Pacific region indicates the deployment as a response to China’s “threatening actions”.

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Featured image adapted from @NATO_AIRCOM on Twitter and Karan Vir on Facebook.

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