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Turkish F-16s excel in NATO Tiger Meet 2024

Turkish F-16s excel in NATO Tiger Meet 2024 Turkish Air Force 192nd Squadron of the Turkish Air Force, F-16 aircraft attends Tiger Meet 2024 (AA Photos)
By Newsroom
Jun 15, 2024 5:33 PM

Three F-16 aircraft and 49 personnel from Air Force Command participated in the NATO Tiger Meet Exercise 2024 held in Germany from June 3 to June 14, 2024, the Ministry of Defense announced on its official X account.

During the exercise, a total of 22 sorties were conducted with different types of aircraft from friendly and allied countries. Among the 21 squadrons participating in the exercise, the Turkish air force achieved third place in the best aircraft paint design category with the red-patterned Turkish aircraft.

NATO Tiger Association

Turkish F-16s excel in NATO Tiger Meet 2024
NATO Tiger Meet 2024 Patch (NATO Tigers)

The NATO Tiger Association, founded in 1961 under the leadership of French Defense Minister Pierre Messmer, plays a crucial role in fostering solidarity among NATO Air Forces. It operates independently from NATO’s official structure, focusing on promoting camaraderie and cooperation among participating air units.

The initiative was taken by the United States Air Forces in Europe (USAFE) 79th Tactical Fighter Squadron (TFS) and on July 19, 1961, they invited No. 74 Squadron RAF from the French Armee de l’air and EC (Fighter Squadron) 1/12 Cambresis in England at Woodbridge. France was a full military member of NATO at that time.

As of February 2022, the association consists of 23 full members, nine honorary members, two candidate members, eight disbanded members, and four former members. All of these units have a tiger as part of their squadron emblem. Tiger Meets serve as an opportunity for NATO air forces to share ideas and experiences and also function as public relations exercises for NATO. NATO aircraft are often painted with striking tiger stripes.

NATO Tiger Association: Platform for air force collaboration

The NATO Tiger Association stands as a testament to the solidarity among NATO Air Forces. It is not officially part of NATO’s structure but serves a crucial role in fostering cooperation and camaraderie among member countries.

  • Belgium: The Belgian Air Force’s 31 Smaldeel showcased its prowess during the 2014 NATO Tiger Meet with a Saab JAS39C Gripen taking off from Schleswig-Jagel Air Base in Northern Germany.
  • Czech Republic: The 211th Tactical Squadron and the 221st Helicopter Squadron made significant contributions during the NATO Tiger Meets, with a Saab JAS39C Gripen and a Mil Mi-35 helicopter making their marks in the exercises.
  • Germany: Notable squadrons like Taktisches Luftwaffengeschwader 51 “Immelmann” and Taktisches Luftwaffengeschwader 74 “Bavarian Tigers” showcased their prowess with Panavia Tornado and Mikojan-Gurewitsch MiG-29 aircraft, along with innovative designs like the Ghost Tiger.
  • Hungary: The 59/1. Harcaszati Repulo Szazad from the Hungarian Air Force added its flair to the Tiger Meets, demonstrating the country’s aviation capabilities.
  • Greece: The 335 Mira Squadron “Tigers” from the Greek Air Force left their mark with the A-7 Corsair aircraft during the Archangelos 2005 air show.
  • France: From Escadron de Chasse et d’Expérimentation 1/30 to Escadron de Chasse 3/30, French Air Force units showcased their expertise with aircraft like the Dassault Mirage 2000-5F and participated actively in the NATO Tiger Meets.
  • Italy: The 12° Gruppo and 21° Gruppo from the Italian Air Force contributed significantly to the Tiger Meets, with their Agusta-Bell HH-212A helicopter leaving a lasting impression.
  • NATO: Squadron 1 from NATO’s Airborne Early Warning Force, represented by the Boeing E-3A Sentry, played a crucial role in the exercises, enhancing NATO’s airborne capabilities.
  • Netherlands: The 313 Squadron of the Royal Netherlands Air Force added Dutch prowess to the Tiger Meets, showcasing their skills and teamwork.
  • Norway: The 338 Skvadron from the Royal Norwegian Air Force participated in exercises like the Arctic Challenge, showcasing Norway’s capabilities in challenging environments.
  • Portugal: The Esquadra 301 “Jaguares” from the Portuguese Air Force made notable contributions, particularly during the Aire75 International Air Show.
  • Poland: The 6 Eskadra Lotnicza from the Polish Air Force demonstrated Poland’s aviation capabilities and contributed to the spirit of cooperation in the Tiger Meets.
  • Switzerland: The Fliegerstaffel 11 from the Swiss Air Force added a touch of Swiss precision and expertise to the NATO Tiger Meets.
  • Spain: Units like 142 Escuadrón from the Spanish Air Force and ALA 15 from the Spanish Navy showcased Spain’s aviation prowess, particularly with aircraft like the F/A-18 Hornet.
  • Türkiye: The 192nd Squadron from the Turkish Air Force made its mark with F-16 aircraft, showcasing Türkiye’s aviation capabilities on the international stage.
  • United Kingdom: The 230 Squadron from the Royal Air Force and the 814 Squadron from the Royal Navy added British flair to the Tiger Meets

Last Updated:  Jun 21, 2024 1:54 AM