Since the beginning of NATO’s Operation Sea Guardian, more than eight Allied navies have provided ships, aircraft and submarines in direct support of the operation. Today, the Croatian Navy and Royal Navy join the effort by providing direct support with a ship each.
Operation Sea Guardian is a maritime security operation aimed at working with Mediterranean stakeholders to maintain maritime situational awareness, deter and counter terrorism and enhance partner capacity building. Croatian Navy vessel HRMV Vukovar (RTOP-41) and Royal Navy vessel HMS Echo will join Italian Navy frigate ITS Espero and various other associated vessels and aircraft in patrolling the central Mediterranean Sea to support Maritime Situational Awareness (MSA).
While working together, the ships will also train together to enhance interoperability by conducting communication drills, counter-asymmetric warfare exercises and information exchanges.
This focused security patrol is part of the larger Operation Sea Guardian effort that operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year out of NATO Maritime Command in Northwood, UK, collecting information from Allies and partners to establish patterns-of-life in the Mediterranean. This in turn allows NATO to identify activities that fall outside the normal patters-of-life and investigate further for possible security concerns.