Dutch F-35s returning from Bulgaria

The Dutch F-35 jets stationed in Bulgaria to monitor the eastern flank of the NATO treaty area will fly their last missions on Tuesday and then return to the Netherlands, the Ministry of Defense said. 

The Netherlands stationed four F-35s in Bulgaria in April, two of which were available to NATO and two as reserves. According to the Ministry, the jets had a deterrent effect and also responded to several threatening situations toward NATO territory.

The jets operated from the Bulgarian Graf Ignatievo. The four planes and about 100 soldiers in the F-35 detachment will return to Leeuwarden Airbase later this week. 

Bulgaria had asked for the jets to remain for longer. “However, this is not possible due to the limitations of the Dutch armed forces,” Defense said. 

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