Oct. 23 (UPI) -- A U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptor fighter plane was seen at an air base in Saudi Arabia, an indication that the stealth planes have been deployed there.
The video was accompanied by the comment that "the ability of fighter jets to operate at a variety of locations like PSAB demonstrates U.S. Air Forces Central Command and U.S. Central Command's commitment to providing a credible, capable and dynamic defense posture in the Middle East region."
U.S. military plans to send an F-22 squadron to Saudi Arabia were reported in July, and on Tuesday, Defense Secretary Mark Esper met with F-22 air crews at the Saudi airbase from the 27th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va., who deployed to Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, during the summer.
Esper's visit was part of a Middle East tour that included stops in Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia. Several weeks ago the Defense Department announced announced it would deploy two fighter squadrons, one air expeditionary wing, two Patriot batteries, and one Terminal High Altitude Area Defense System to Saudi Arabia, a possible indication of preparations related to rising tensions with Iran.