A Spanish Navy frigate and an auxiliary oiler left their home port in Ferrol, Spain, last weekend to join the Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 in the Mediterranean Sea.
Álvaro de Bazán-class frigate Méndez Núñez and oiler AOR Patiño will become part of SNMG2’s Task Unit 02 (TU.02), currently under command of Spanish Navy Captain Rubén Rodríguez Peña.
TU.02 is currently composed of Canadian frigate HMCS St. John’s and Spain’s Almirante Juan de Borbon. The two ships recently spent some 20 days in the Black Sea taking part in exercises and engaging regional navies. The ships headed back to the Mediterranean Sea on February 20.
ESPS Méndez Núñez will relieve her sister ship Almirante Juan de Borbón as flagship of the group, while the Patiño will provide logistic support to all naval units of the maritime group, as well as to other Spanish warships deployed in the Mediterranean including another Spanish frigate, the Canarias, presently engaged in EUNAVFORMED operation Sophia fighting human trafficking in that area.
Both ships will take part in the large international anti-submarine exercise Dynamic Manta in Sicilian waters,Italy, and will also visit different ports in Greece, Turkey, Italy and Tunisia.
ESPS Méndez Núñez is the fourth of five Aegis-equipped anti-air warfare Álvaro de Bazán-class frigates (F-100).
The AOR Patiño, commissioned into active service in 1995, has a complement of 150 people and is capable of supplying 9,000 m3 of fuel and 2,000 tons of food, ammunition and spare parts to other naval units at sea.