Safe skies: NATO Air Policing – Slovenia and Western Balkans

In Slovenia and the Western Balkans, several Allies – including NATO’s newest member countries Montenegro and North Macedonia – don’t have fighter jets capable of intercepting unsafe air traffic.

To secure the airspace over these countries, other NATO Allies take turns leading air policing missions. In Slovenia, the Italian and Hungarian Air Forces share responsibility, while in Montenegro and Albania, it’s the Italian and Greek Air Forces. In November 2021, the Greek Air Force assumed responsibility for safeguarding North Macedonia’s airspace under the NATO air policing mission umbrella.

Across Europe, NATO fighter jets are on duty around the clock, ready to scramble in case of suspicious or unannounced flights near the airspace of our Allies. NATO calls this activity Air Policing, which has been an integral part of NATO Integrated Air and Missile Defence for 60 years. In this series, we’ll explore NATO’s five special air policing arrangements to ensure the integrity of NATO’s airspace and the defence of our almost one billion citizens.

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The NATO press office is based in Brussels.

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