SNMG1 join Allies and Partners for exercise BALTOPS
BALTIC SEA – Standing NATO Maritime Group One (SNMG1) is currently engaging in exercise BALTOPS, as part of the Group's deployment to the Baltic Sea. Together with 40 ships from 14 allied and Partner nations, they left Szczecin, Poland on Sunday.
BALTOPS marks SNMG1's third large multinational exercise this year, after the Group's participation in TG17-1/Dynamic Guard, off the coast of Norway in February and Joint Warrior off the coast of Scotland in March-April.
BALTOPS is an annual maritime-focused exercise in the Baltic region and one of the largest exercises in Northern Europe.
"We are very excited to take part in BALTOPS 2017. The exercise offers SNMG1 valuable high-end training across the entire spectrum of naval warfare, and provides a great arena to enhance interoperability and share best practices between Allies and Key Partners," said Commander SNMG1, Commodore Ole Morten Sandquist (NOR).
SNMG1 is currently deployed to the Baltic Sea, and has during the past weeks trained together with several Allies and Partners in the region. The Baltic Sea is an area of great strategic importance, and SNMG1 are providing maritime situational awareness to the Alliance.
"After a successful pre-sail part in Szczecin, Poland, I look forward to commence the at-sea phase of the exercise. BALTOPS 2017 provides SNMG1 with valuable training across several areas of expertise, such as air, surface, sub-surface, mine warfare and amphibious operations, and is a visible demonstration of NATO`s commitment to the region," said Sandquist.
SNMG1 is currently composed of the NATO group flagship, Norwegian frigate HNoMS Roald Amundsen and Dutch frigate HNLMS Evertsen.
Commodore Sandquist is in command of one of five maritime task groups during BALTOPS. His task group is comprised of the two SNMG1 ships, and four additional ships: US destroyer USS James E. Williams, Danish command and support ship HDMS Absalon, Swedish corvette HSwMS Nyköping, and Finnish minelayer FNS Hämeenmaa.