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Robin Radar Systems is providing active drone detection and tracking at Airbase Leeuwarden during a large international military exercise.

The measures are due to an increase in unauthorised drones around Airbase Leeuwarden during Frisian Flag 2019.

Frisian Flag 2019 is an international military exercise including over 50 international fighter jets training complex scenarios over a two-week period.

Spokeswoman Natasja van Rijn spoke about the problem with De Telegraaf, and said: "the safety of the aircraft is being endangered by the drones”.

According to Van Rijn, the problem of drones is only getting worse. "These days, they are getting cheaper and are available in every toy store."

“You can see that the spotters' area is now completely full. And the spotters are taking more and more equipment with them: ladders, cameras - and also drones."

The fact that flying drones within 3km of a military airbase is a criminal offence doesn't seem to sway some.

“Apparently, everyone in the Netherlands thinks that the rules only apply to others and not to themselves.”

Although Defence doesn’t want to disclose exactly which countermeasures are in place it is known that they are at least using drone detection radar.

“Ideally, just like our bird controller makes sure there are no birds in the sky, you want to make sure there are no drones or other things in the sky too.”

“Jet fighters have an inlet at the front. You don't even want to think about what might happen if something gets in there."

And she’s right. Most fighter jets are single-engine aircraft. If the engine is taken out by a drone, well… that aircraft effectively becomes a brick.