Ruska 21 to kick-start next week
Ruska 21, an exercise under Finnish-Swedish defence cooperation, will be held on 4-9 October. Around 3,300 personnel and 50 aircraft, including Gripen, will participate.
The Finnish Air Force guards Finland's airspace throughout the year, and exercises like Ruska 21 gives them an opportunity to test and enhance their readiness for challenging air operations. The participating forces get to work with a large team that operates different aircraft, and this prepares them for missions of a large scale and also help them hone their interoperability skills.
This year, the event aims to train active-duty personnel, conscripts of Karelia and Satakunta Air Commands, and training reservists for tasks during emergency scenarios. The scheduled activities include flight missions at low altitudes, supersonic flying at 10-kilometre altitude above the mainland, and countermeasures dispensing.
As a part of the exercise, the participating aircraft will perform air defence tasks and act as an adversary as well. The training scenarios will keep evolving to add more challenges.
Rissala and Pirkkala will serve as the main bases for force training air defence tasks at Ruska 21. Besides Gripen, the Swedish Air Force will send an Argus airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) aircraft to the exercise as well.
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