The defense exercise North Viking (Nordurvíkingur), in which approximately 450 people participate, begins in Iceland today.
Keflavík International Airport. Copyright: Icelandic Photo Agency.
They come from the American, Norwegian and Italian air forces and will be using 16 fighter jets, three fuel jets and two specialized communication aircraft that have been transported to Keflavík International Airport, ruv.is reports.
Additionally, one Norwegian and two Danish military cruisers and one Danish rescue helicopter will be used during the practice.
The 450 foreign participants will be assisted by employees of the Icelandic Coast Guard and other local organizers.
The exercise is held in accordance with a defense agreement between Iceland and the US from 2006. North Viking has been held regularly in Iceland since 1991 but in 2006 it was decided to make it a biannual event. It is organized as the responsibility of the US Air Force in Europe.
Originally, the execution of the exercise was supposed to cost ISK 36 million (USD 314,000, EUR 217,000) but due to reduced extent of operations, the cost could drop by ISK 7 million. North Viking ends on June 10.