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French, Greek fighter jets land in Paphos

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F-16 Greek fighter jets and French Rafale warplanes arrived at Andreas Papandreou airbase in Paphos on Tuesday as they prepare to take part in military exercises off Cyprus later this week.

CyBC stated official sources saying the military aircraft are in Cyprus as part of a show of strength in the region to counter Turkish activity in the eastern Mediterranean.

Cyprus, Greece, and France will participate in joint air and sea manoeuvres from Wednesday through to Friday’s final phase in response to Turkey’s energy search within Cypriot and Greek waters.

Reportedly, Paphos airbase will be the operational centre for military exercises off the island’s west coast.

France has already upped its presence in the East Med with the La Fayette frigate patrolling around Cyprus as part of a defence pact with Nicosia.

The National Guard is expected to participate in the joint aeronautical exercise and activate its anti-aircraft umbrella.

Three French Rafale fighter jets and the same number of Greek F-16s are temporarily stationed at the Andreas Papandreou base in Paphos, other reports said.