F-16C Aviano (@ U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ericka A. Woolever)

USAF F-16C aircraft from 31st Fighter Wing arrive in Greece for exercise Iniochos 21

U.S. Air Force Airmen and F-16C Fighting Falcon aircraft assigned to the 31st Fighter Wing, Aviano Air Base, Italy, arrived at Andravida Air Base, Greece, to support international exercise INIOCHOS 21. The exercise is a Hellenic air force-sponsored operational and tactical level field training exercise, hosted by the Hellenic Air Tactics Center at Greece’s fighter weapons school, located at Andravida Air Base, Greece, from April 12-22, 2021.

The exercise aims to enhance combat readiness and fighting capability, while providing participants the opportunity to develop capabilities planning and conduct complex air operations in a multinational, joint force environment.

Along with Greek and U.S. participants, Canada, Cyprus, Israel, Slovenia, Spain and the United Arab Emirates are scheduled to support. Participation in multinational exercises like INIOCHOS 21 enhances our professional relationships and improves overall coordination with ally and partner militaries during times of crisis.

INIOCHOS is an important opportunity for our Airmen to train alongside and learn from our Greek allies as well as the other exercise participants,” said U.S. Air Force Gen Jeff Harrigian, USAFE-AFAFRICA commander. “It both improves the relationships that underpin our military alliance and creates opportunities to refine critical skills that enhance our interoperability.

Additional U.S. forces scheduled to participate include KC-135 Stratotanker aircraft assigned to the 100th Air Refueling Wing, RAF Mildenhall, England, MQ-9 Reaper aircraft assigned to the 731st Expeditionary Attack Squadron, flying out of Campia Turzii, Romania, and Joint Terminal Attack Controllers assigned to the 2nd Air Support Operations Squadron, Vilseck, Germany.

Exercise “INIOCHOS” is an annual medium scale exercise (type INVITEX) based on the facilities of the AIR TACTICS CENTER at the Andravida Air Base, located in the Northwest Peloponnese. The duration of the exercise is 15 calendar days and operations make use of the majority of Athena FIR. The Exercise scenario adopts a Single Base Concept (execution of operations from a single Air Base), with the participation of all branches of the Armed Forces.

In INIOCHOS 2021 the following A/C from various countries, are participating:

  • France with Rafale and Μ-2000D
  • USA with F-16, MQ-9 and KC-135
  • UAE with F-16
  • Spain with F/A-18 Hornet
  • Israel with F-15 and F-16
  • Cyprus with helicopter AW139

Given the high level of the HAF personnel and our capability to conduct exercises involving a variety of weapon systems within one of the largest exercise areas in Europe, the exercise «INIOCHOS» tends to become one of the most competitive exercises in Europe and the Mediterranean region, and provide Participants with a high level of training and unique experience of participation.