The RAF will fly Nato missions with Germany over Estonia for the first time in a show of strength to Russia.
It will be the first joint air policing mission of its kind for the UK in the Baltic country as it works with German Air Force Typhoon jets.
Around 300 RAF personnel from the 140 Expeditionary Air Wing (EAW) will deploy to Estonia imminently as the RAF prepares to take the lead on the long-established Nato air policing mission from the German Air Force for four months.
The jets will fly together on live Nato-controlled intercepts.
Ben Wallace, the Defence Secretary, said the mission would ensure the security of Europe’s skies and bolster Nato’s presence in eastern Europe.
He said: “Joint operations of this kind demonstrate the strength and unity of the Nato alliance and our shared resolve to maintain peace and security across the region.”
Wing Commander Scott Maccoll, Commanding Officer of 140 EAW, said “the level of cooperation” between the two nations’ forces had reached a new stage.
He asked: “What better way to demonstrate the strength and unity of the Nato alliance than through successful, shared operations such as this?”
Currently there are around 1,000 British soldiers in Estonia as part of Nato’s Enhanced Forward Presence.