French Navy frigate FS Guepratte, Italian frigate ITS Scirocco and Spanish offshore patrol vessel ESPS Serviola came together on June 1 to perform patrol duties in western Mediterranean waters.
The ships will be working under NATO’s maritime security operation Sea Guardian.
The group was briefed by the Commander, Allied Maritime Command, Vice Admiral Clive Johnstone, on Monday at French Rapid Reaction Force (FRMARFOR) facilities at Toulon Naval Base in Toulon, France before getting underway later that day.
Operation Sea Guardian is a NATO maritime security operation with three standing tasks of maritime counter terrorism, maritime situational awareness and regional maritime capacity building. Allied Maritime Command builds regular task group formations for operation Sea Guardian to focus on specific areas of the Mediterranean.
This is the first time a task group has been led by a French Navy Captain and included a French frigate. While sailing to the focused operations area, the group conducted intensive training in seamanship, cross boarding and naval gunfire.