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NATO to conduct largest air exercise in Europe amid tensions with Russia

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NATO to conduct largest air exercise in Europe amid tensions with Russia

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NATO’s largest air exercise, which will take place in Europe next week, will demonstrate the alliance’s unity, strength and readiness, a senior US diplomat said on Wednesday.

“This is an exercise that would be absolutely impressive to anybody who’s watching,” US Ambassador to Germany Amy Gutmann told a news conference in Berlin.

“I would be pretty surprised if any world leader was not taking note of what this shows in terms of the spirit of this alliance, which means the strength of this alliance, and that includes Mr. (Vladimir) Putin,” she said.

Gutmann said the US has sent over 100 aircraft and 2,000 military personnel to Europe to take part in the military exercise, which will be held on June 12-23.

Also read: China urges 'high vigilance' over NATO expansion in Asia

“Air Defender 2023 is the largest deployment exercise of allied air power in Europe, in NATO’s history. It will demonstrate beyond a shadow of a doubt the agility and the swiftness of our allied force in NATO as a first responder,” she said.

Around 10,000 military personnel from 25 NATO nations will take part in the military exercise, and practice defensive maneuvers in the German and European air space.

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