Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Indonesian and United States (US) Air Forces held the first joint exercise for landing bombers.

In a historic first, two US B-52 bombers landed in Indonesia on June 19 to execute training exercises with the Indonesian Airforce's (TNI-AU's) F-16 aircraft, the US Embassy in Jakarta noted in a statement on Friday.

According to the US Embassy, the landing at Kualanamu airport in Medan and subsequent operations mark the first time that US B-52s have operated from Indonesia.

The aircraft, from the 23rd Expeditionary Bomb Squadron (23EBS) from the Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota, are participating in interoperability landing joint exercises with the Indonesian Air Force and US Pacific Air Forces (PACAF).

As many as 60 crew from the 23EBS are involved in conducting the bomber landing joint exercise in conjunction with Cope West 2023, a bilateral exercise being held at the Roesmin Nurjadin Air Force Base, Pekanbaru, Indonesia, on June 12-23.

In this joint exercise, the US and Indonesian participants will exercise tactical fighter capabilities, evaluate proficiency, identify future training opportunities, and enhance capabilities integral to a variety of bilateral missions.

This year, Indonesia and the US conducted the 10th Cope West joint exercise in Indonesia. Cope West is a routine joint exercise that was first held in 1989.

Pacific Air Forces, in coordination with other components, allies, and partners, provides the US Indo-Pacific Command with continuous unrivaled air, space, and cyberspace capabilities to uphold the rules-based international order and ensure a free and open Indo-Pacific, the US Embassy stated.

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Reporter: Yuni Arisandy Sinaga
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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