Usually one of the largest maritime exercises in the year, Joint Warrior in the United Kingdom (UK), has been de-scoped due to the worldwide Covid-19 outbreak. The exercise ran for two weeks, wrapping up on 9 April 2020.
We are a component of the Very High Readiness Forces available to NATO and must be able to stay ready, even in times like this
SNMG1 staff supported the exercise together with the British Joint Tactical Exercise Planning Staff (JTEPS). The aim for the exercise is to train both submarines and surface units in different environments and tactics at sea.
The US Destroyer Donald Cook and the British auxiliary ship Tideforce joined SNMG1, currently consisting of the flagship HNoMS Otto Sverdrup, HDMS Absalon and FGS Rhon.
Royal Danish Navy command and support vessel Absalon participates in UK-led exercise Joint Warrior, as part of Standing NATO Maritime Group One on 30 March 2020. Photo: Royal Norwegian Navy
The exercise supports the Norwegian and the UK Submarine Commanders Course on the north-west coast of Scotland with participating submarines from the UK and Norway.
NATO’s Standing Naval Forces, like SNMG1, maintain continuous presence and readiness at sea to conduct not only operations, but also exercises that provide us with the necessary training and interaction with other Allied units. This ability to maintain a permanent and available force has allowed for exercises like Joint Warrior to still be executed despite Covid-19 outbreak. Commodore Yngve Skoglund, Commander of SNMG1 is therefore satisfied with being able to conduct Joint Warrior this spring in support of Submarine Commanders Courses.
“Even though this is not the Joint Warrior we planned for, I am very satisfied with the fact that we can support the Submarine Commanders Course. It gives us valuable training, both as a force, but also for each individual ship in my task group. It is important to maintain the ability to execute our mission and tasks, despite of the threat from Covid-19. We are a component of the Very High Readiness Forces available to NATO and must be able to stay ready, even in times like this,” says Commodore Skoglund.