Standing NATO Maritime Group Two (SNMG2) continues to monitor ‘substantial’ Russian naval activity in the eastern Mediterranean Sea and will revise the schedule for exercises, say the alliance.
NATO says it will postpone exercise Dynamic Guard to provide flexibility in the schedule to support Allied operational interests.
This move is in response to Russia staging a large-scale military exercise in the Mediterranean Sea near Syria, involving both its Navy and Air Force. The drills were held amid ongoing escalation around Idlib.
Footage released by Russia’s Defence Ministry shows Russianl Forces landing on the shores of Syria’s Latakia province. The troops used helicopters, fast-attack craft and armoured vehicles while landing from amphibious ships under the cover of combat aircraft.
SNMG2 ships including flagship HNLMS De Ruyter, HMCS Ville de Quebec, HS Elli and ESPS Cristobal Colon, in coordination with additional Allied navy units in the area, will support maritime situational awareness throughout the eastern Mediterranean.
According to the alliance in a news release:
“Several Allied nations border the eastern Mediterranean Sea and have a vested interest in maintaining awareness of activities in the region. Maintaining this flexibility in the schedule of operations for the standing maritime groups allows the ships to provide value back to Allied nations.
Maritime Situational Awareness supports greater awareness, safety at sea and reduces the risk of any mistakes or miscalculation.”
Dynamic Guard is a multinational air defence and electronic warfare exercise. The aim of this exercise is to maintain proficiency in electronic warfare and anti-ship missile defence of vessels assigned to NATO.