News story

New RAF unit strengthens relationship with United Arab Emirates

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The RAF's 906 Expeditionary Air Wing (EAW) was stood up in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on 15 January 2013, marking a significant milestone in relations with the UAE.

Based in the UAE, 906 EAW’s tasks will include the provision of support to air transport links between the UK and deployed operations in Afghanistan, as well as logistic support to deployed forces.

The newly-stood-up EAW will also be responsible for supporting RAF aircraft conducting joint exercises in the region. The RAF’s Typhoon and E-3D Sentry aircraft have recently been exercising with multinational contingents at another location in the UAE.

Aircraft have also joined the Advanced Tactical Leadership Course that has been hosted for the past 10 years by the Emirates.

906 Expeditionary Air Wing
906 Expeditionary Air Wing in the United Arab Emirates [Picture: Crown Copyright/MOD 2013]

Air Commodore Phil Beach, UK Air Component Commander, 83 Expeditionary Air Group, was in the UAE to mark the formal stand-up of 906 EAW. He said:

The standing up of 906 Expeditionary Air Wing in the United Arab Emirates marks an important milestone for the RAF and underlines the continued strong relationship that we share with our UAE friends.

We are grateful for the excellent facilities that have been provided for us and look forward to participating regularly in flying exercises in the region.

Wing Commander Mike Baulkwill, Officer Commanding 6 Squadron, which took part in exercises with their Typhoon aircraft in the UAE prior to Christmas last year, said:

We have seen the ground crew and pilots from 6 Squadron lead and operate in a very different environment, giving the pilots, ground crew and support staff an opportunity to work alongside other nations and our Emirate counterparts.