Nymindegab, Denmark, the UK’s Standing Joint Force Headquarters (SJFHQ) conducted Exercise Joint Protector, a Command Post Exercise (CPX) of the Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF). The JEF is an organisation formed of eight NATO Allies from around Northern Europe, plus Partner Nations Finland and Sweden.
SJFHQ’s Group Captain Kevin Latchman RAF said, “The Joint Expeditionary Force is entirely complementary to NATO – we use NATO doctrine, NATO processes and NATO language. Ultimately, NATO remains the security guarantor for Europe, and we will do everything to make NATO better.”
In Latvia, Standing NATO Maritime Group 1 (SNMG1) worked alongside Battlegroup Latvia to conduct a Naval Gunfire Support exercise. SNMG1 is one of two NATO maritime task forces composed of frigates and destroyers, under the command of NATO Allied Maritime Command (MARCOM) in Northwood, London. In addition to the two SNMGs, MARCOM also commands two Standing Mine Countermeasures Groups (SNMCMGs) composed of minehunters. Together, the four groups help to deter aggression and defend NATO Allies in the Baltic and Mediterranean seas.
In the United Kingdom, the World’s largest warship anchored near Portsmouth on her way to the Baltic. The USS Gerald R. Ford left her home base in the U.S. last month on her first operational deployment. While in Portsmouth the ship hosted a gathering of senior military leaders, before sailing to the Baltic to work alongside ships and personnel from seven NATO Allies. The ship cost nearly $13 billion USD to build and is the lead ship of the U.S. Navy’s next generation of aircraft carriers.
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