Iniohos 2019: Italian combat aircraft successfully complete their training in Greece

Italian F-35 Tornado Iniohos 2019
Italian Air Force F-35A during exercise Iniohos 2019, Greece.

The Italian Air Force combat aircraft have succesfully completed their training in Greece. Six F-35As belonging to the 32nd Wing and six Tornados belonging to the 6th Wing (three Interdiction-Strike - IDS variant and three Electonic Combat Reconnaissance - ECR variant) participated in the largest exercise of the Hellenic Air Force (HAF), the Iniohos 2019, from March 27 to April 11.

The "INIOHOS" was born in the eighties and since 2005 it has been held annually at the Andravida air base. Over the years more and more nations have shown interest in the exercise as shown by the many foreign aircraft featured in this year's edition. The Iniohos 2019 hosted the air assets from Israel, the United Arab Emirates, the United States, together with the Italian and Greek ones.

The Italian aircraft carried out 145 sorties for a total of about 250 flight hours. The crews of the 6th Wing and 32nd Wing operated in a complex and highly realistic scenario, acquiring a high level of training. The Italian pilots conducted "COMposite Air Operations" (COMAO) missions that included various types of training activities such as the Suppression of Enemy Air Defense (SEAD), Time sensitive Targeting (TST), Close Air Support (CAS), Defensive Counter Air (DCA) and Offensive Counter Air (OCA).

In addition, they conducted Air To Surface Integration (ATOSI) activity which jointly involved third, fourth and fifth generation aircraft to improve the integration between different weapon systems. It provided for the launch of inert weapons in dedicated shooting areas.

"The training opportunities offered by Iniohos are excellent. It improves collaboration and promotes the exchange of experience between participating countries, as well as allowing the integration of professionalism and systems in order to be able to better operate jointly in complex scenarios that are increasingly frequent today. We had the opportunity to use fifth generation assets in an international exercise, concretely promoting the interoperability between Tornado and F-35 and their integration with the assets of the other participating countries," the Italian Air Force Operational Forces Commander, General Fernando Giancotti, said*.

*Note: the interview is translated from Italian language and adapted to English

Written by Matteo Sanzani
Source, Images: Italian Air Force

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