The Royal Navy say that this is the most powerful task force assembled by any European Navy in almost 20 years.
The new HMS Queen Elizabeth Carrier Strike Group has assembled for the first time with the aircraft carrier leading a flotilla of destroyers and frigates from the UK, US and the Netherlands, together with two Royal Fleet Auxiliary vessels.
Commander of the UK Carrier Strike Group,Commodore Steve Moorhouse, was quoted as saying that this represents “a comprehensive, cohesive Carrier Strike Group with a sovereign British core, but US & Dutch partners integrated throughout & additional capabilities as required. Ready to fight together on & under the sea, in the air, over the land & in cyberspace”.
Commodore Steve Moorhouse also said:
“The new UK Carrier Strike Group is the embodiment of British maritime power, and sits at the heart of a modernised and emboldened Royal Navy. Protected by a ring of advanced destroyers, frigates, helicopters and submarines, and equipped with fifth generation fighters, HMS Queen Elizabeth is able to strike from the sea at a time and place of our choosing; and with our NATO allies at our side, we will be ready to fight and win in the most demanding circumstances. Carrier Strike offers Britain choice and flexibility on the global stage; it reassures our friends and allies and presents a powerful deterrent to would-be adversaries.”
HMS Queen Elizabeth and her Strike Group are currently exercising alongside allied nations in the North Sea, as part of NATO’s largest annual exercise, Joint Warrior.