On Thursday (4 October 2018), Defence Ministers from Bulgaria, Croatia, Hungary and Slovenia signed a Memorandum of Understanding to create a Multinational Special Aviation Program.
Under the agreement, a new training center will be established in Zadar, Croatia, dedicated exclusively to training air crews, who will conduct the insertion and extraction of Special Operations Forces.
NATO’s Deputy Secretary General, Rose Gottemoeller, commented at the signing ceremony: “As the world changes, NATO must continue to adapt to meet evolving security threats. And Special Forces have proven to be a highly valuable and versatile tool for effectively responding to these challenges.”
She added that “this cooperative arrangement is emblematic of the innovative approach NATO Allies and partners are taking as we enhance our collective defence capabilities.”
This new aviation program will be established in a gradual, step-by-step manner, expanding the training opportunities offered over time. In the process, it will create an important and unique new asset within NATO.
The new aviation training center is expected to open it open its doors by the end of 2019 and will contribute to NATO’s adaptability and readiness.