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First historic flight on an Awacs aircraft with a female crew

Taken off from Nato air base in Germany: 22 women from eight countries of the Atlantic Alliance on board

A new historical chapter has been written in the Nato skies, with a Boeing 707 E-3A Awacs taking off from the Nato Air Base in Geilenkirchen, Germany, for the first time with an entirely female crew. Twenty-two women from eight countries of the Atlantic Alliance took part in the operation, occupying key roles as pilots, controllers and on-board technicians.

This flight, part of Nato's Enhanced Vigilance Activities, and promoted by the NAEW&CF Women's Initiative Team (WIT), aims to promote the participation of women in roles traditionally held by men and to highlight the significant progress made towards gender equality within the Alliance.

Captain Béatrice, Aircrew Training Squadron Flight Commander, underlined that this flight not only carried out Nato's operational border surveillance mission, but also demonstrated that women can occupy any position on board the Awacs with the same capabilities as their male colleagues. Concept reiterated by Captain Ciara, Aircrew Training Squadron Simulator Operations Chief.

Nato has noted a significant increase in the presence of women in the armed forces of member States and partners, doubling the average percentage of women since 1998. This reflects the Alliance's commitment to enhancing the contribution of women to ensuring security and defense of over a billion people.

Nato's Awacs (Airborne Early Warning & Control) aircraft, equipped with long-range radar and passive sensors, plays a crucial role in detecting air and surface tracks hundreds of kilometers away, providing vital information for Nato operations of Alliance and its allies. The E-3A thus assumes significant importance not only in the field of early warning but also in the command, control and management of operations sector.

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AVIONEWS - World Aeronautical Press Agency