Today, thanks to a warning from our friend Sergio Scandura, we’ve tracked an interesting (and unusual) flight of an Italian Air Force ATR P-72A.
The aircraft (reg. MM62279) left the Sigonella airbase at 08:41 CEST and then conducted a long surveillance mission off the Greek Ionian islands, first west of Corfu and then Kefalonia and Zakynthos.
Just west of Zakynthos the aircraft orbited for a long time before proceeding further south and then returning to base around 15:00.
During the course of the mission, the aircraft flew at an altitude of 11,000 feet, operating most of its patrol over international waters but within the Greek FIR.
This would suggest a NATO mission.
Although we do not know their exact position (nor do we know if they are still there) but at the end of July at least three Russian Navy surface vessels (the cruiser Varyag, the destroyer Admiral Tributs and the intelligence ship Tatishchev) were reported to be sailing between the southern Adriatic and Ionian Sea.