Three KC-135 Stratotankers, along with 50 Airmen from the 100th Air Refueling Wing at Royal Air Force Mildenhall, England, temporarily deployed to Istres-Le Tubé Air Base, France, in support of Operation Juniper Micron.
The U.S. has been supporting the French government in Operation Juniper Micron at their request since 2013, providing air refueling and airlift support of French operations in Mali and North Africa.
Since December 2015 alone, the 100th ARW has flown more than 750 sorties, refueled more than 2,900 French aircraft, and off-loaded nearly 28 million pounds of fuel while supporting French operations.
The strategic decision to temporarily deploy the KC-135s to Istres is the result of the continual evaluation of how to best support French ally forces in the air and on the ground.
The long-standing relationship between the U.S. and France enables operational success by allowing a forward-based presence of U.S. Air Forces in Europe — Air Forces Africa assets and the ability to move forward quickly in support of French operations.