During the scheduled port-call at Tunis, the frigate ‘Álvaro de Bazán’ (F-101) and the Turkish frigate ‘Salihreis’, integrated into the Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 (SNMG-2), have trained with naval units from the Tunisian Navy.
These PASSEX-type exercises are intended to assure that the participating navies are adequately trained to communicate and cooperate in emergency situations. They are normally carried out when a foreign warship transits through the territorial waters of another country.
The two SNMG-2 frigates trained with the patrol boat ‘Tunis’ doing maneuver and navigation drills, cargo transfers between ships and boarding exercises. In this last exercise the Tunisian ship provided a VBSS (visit, board, search and seizure) Team and boarded the Turkish frigate, acting as suspicious ship.
The collaboration concluded with the simulated rescue of a shipwrecked person by the F-101’s helicopter.
The SNMG-2 flagship ‘Álvaro de Bazán’ is participating in operation ‘Active Endeavour’ in the Mediterranean from October to November. This operation is a deterrent mission safeguarding the Mediterranean Sea from terrorist activities, carrying out maritime security operations and enhancing the awareness of the maritime domain.
From December to March the ship will participate in operation ‘Ocean Shield’, a NATO contribution to the international effort to fight piracy in the Horn of Africa.
Press Release, November 1, 2013; Image: Spanish Navy