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B-1B conducts Bomber Task Force mission in Norway and Sweden

A U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer takes off from Bodø Air Station, Norway, Monday. The B-1 conducted a "warm-pit" refuel while at Bodø, an operation that will speed up the refueling process so the bomber can more quickly return to the sky. Photo courtesy U.S. Air Force
A U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer takes off from Bodø Air Station, Norway, Monday. The B-1 conducted a "warm-pit" refuel while at Bodø, an operation that will speed up the refueling process so the bomber can more quickly return to the sky. Photo courtesy U.S. Air Force

March 9 (UPI) -- A B-1B Lancer conducted a Bomber Task Force mission in Norway and Sweden earlier this week, according to the Air Force.

The B-1B, from the 7th Bomb Wing at Texas' Dyess Air Force Base, provided support to Norwegian and Swedish joint terminal attack control training.

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The aircraft also conducted a "warm-pit refuel" at Bodø Air Force Station in Norway and integrated with four Swedish JAS-39 Gripen fighter aircraft.

"It's not every day that our bomber has the chance to play such a prominent role in training ally and partner JTACs," Gen. Jeff Harrigian, USAFE-AFAFRICA commander, said in a press release. "Opportunities to train alongside our allies, partners and U.S. Special Operations Forces in forward locations makes us the rapid, resilient and ready force we need to be."

The mission is one of several recent B-1 deployments to the Arctic region.

At the end of February two B-1 bombers flew a show of force near Russian naval bases -- the first since being deployed to Norway earlier in the month.

In May, B-1Bs integrated with English, Swedish, Dutch and Norwegian aircraft for exercises that included the Lancer's first flight over Sweden.

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And in September, two B-1B Lancers also flew directly over the North Pole to Greenland as part of a two-week training mission in conjunction with Norway's air force.

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