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Mar 23 2022

NATO forces increase mine countermeasures readiness during Hellenic Navy Exercise Ariadne

SOUDA, Greece – Standing NATO Mine Countermeasures Group 2 (SNMCMG2), took part in Greek-led Exercise Ariadne 22 from March 7 to 18 in southern Aegean sea off the coast of Crete.

Exercise Ariadne is an annual mine countermeasures exercise hosted by the Chief of the Hellenic Fleet designed to enhance operational and tactical capabilities, and readiness of all participants. 

This exercise provided the opportunity to promote cooperation and mutual understanding among different units 

The Exercise began in Souda with the harbour phase from March 7-8 and progressed to the sea phase from March 9-17. Participants conducted a series of mine countermeasures tasks based on fictitious scenarios including very shallow water (VSW) operations to facilitate explosive ordnance disposal and improvised explosive device disposal, autonomous underwater vehicle employment, and mine recovery operations.

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"Ariadne 22 was beneficial for SNMCMG2 as a NATO Standing Force," Captain Javier Nunez de Prado, Commander SNMCMG2 said. "There was a robust level of integration among ships and proper training in mine countermeasures were obtained during the TACEX [tactical exercise] phase. This exercise provided the opportunity to promote cooperation and mutual understanding among different units."

During Ariadne 22, SNMCMG2 comprised Spanish flagship ESPS Meteoro (P41) and mine hunters ESPS Sella (M32) (Spain), ITS Gaeta (M5554) (Italy) and FGS Bad Rappenau (M1067) (Germany). The Hellenic Navy also provided critical helicopter support from a frigate; a fast patrol boat; and several minehunters.

SNMCMG2 operates under Allied Maritime Command (MARCOM), headquartered in Northwood, United Kingdom. MARCOM is the central command of all NATO maritime forces and the MARCOM commander is the primary maritime advisor to the Alliance.

Story by Public Affairs Office at MARCOM

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