Spanish Navy’s minehunters ‘Segura’ and ‘Sella’ took part in Italian Navy’s Mine Countermeasures (MCM) exercise ITA MINEX-15 in the Gulf of La Spezia and the Ligurian Sea.
The exercise brought together a total of 11 minehunters from six nations plus three EOD teams, three AUVs (autonomous underwater vehicle) and observers from 11 nations.
The Spanish COMANDRAG-1 (Minesweepers Commander) served as Commanding Officer of the 1st MCM Task Group made up of the Spanish Navy minehunters ‘Segura’ and ‘Sella’, the French ‘Orion’, the Greek ‘Kallisto’ and the Italian ‘Chioggia’, as well as an MCM Diving Unit.
The exercise contemplated a humanitarian crisis scenario in a failed state. The multinational MCM force operated as a forward expeditionary force paving the way for the subsequent arrival of an amphibious force tasked with the mission of delivering humanitarian aid to the civilian population.
The scenario envisaged uncontrolled armed groups led by a warlord who had previously mined the local ports and was ready to counter any multinational operation.
To simulate the operation, the Italian Navy laid 72 dummy mines and conducted 58 attacks with fast patrol boats and SH-90 helicopters against the MCM units.
Italian Navy ‘Sea Riders’ embarked on the Spanish minehunters for damage control and fire-fighting drills.
Image: Italian Navy