This morning the skies of the central Mediterranean were very busy. We have already written about the Turkish airlift between Misrata and Turkey but the two Turkish A400s were not the only guests.
In fact, an USAF Boeing RC-135W (reg. 64-14849) departed from Souda Bay AB is making a surveillance mission off western Libya (flying in international airspace) on the stretch from Misrata to Zwara (including Tripoli).
The aircraft after several hours is still in the area (13:00 CEST).
The mission also requested coordination with an USAF Boeing KC-135R (reg. 63-8878 – callsign QID592), departed around 04:30 CEST from RAF Mildenhall, UK, which operated an aerial refueling off Tripoli.
Yesterday evening a NATO Global Hawk also operated in the same area.
The nature of these missions is unknown but it seems too evident that they are a concrete response to the American declarations with which the US commitment in the area has been reaffirmed (also to stem Turkish activism).
Finally, it should be noted that an Italian Air Force Beech B350ER (MM62300) departed from Pantelleria AB also operated a surveillance mission in the area this morning, but this type of mission should not be linked to the American one as it is carried out almost daily.