The Finnish Navy trains on NATO ships in the Archipelago Sea

The Finnish Navy trains on NATO ships in the Archipelago Sea

Standing Nato Mine Countermeasures Group 1 (abbreviated SNMCMG1) – a group of six vessels operating directly – will train with the Finnish Navy in the Archipelago Sea on Thursday and Friday.

The joint exercise is led by the Finnish Coastal Fleet.

SNMCMG1 will also visit the port city of Turku from Monday to Wednesday.

Coast Fleet Chief of Staff, Commander Mikko Villikarisaid this is a routine exercise planned a year in advance.

"The main goal of the exercise is to search for and identify underwater objects," Villikari said and added that international exercises are important for the Finnish navy.

"In these exercises, we learn to work as part of a group we are not constantly dealing with. It helps to maintain international expertise," Villikari pointed out.

Chief of Staff of the Coastal Fleet, Commander Mikko Villikari.Defense Forces

Three ships of the SNMCMG1 group will arrive in Turku on Monday: the flagship LVNS Chief From Latvia, EML Sakala From Estonia and HNLMS Schiedam From the Netherlands.

The vessels are not open to the public.

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Practice to focus on mine action

The Joint Passing Exercise (PASSEX) focuses on mine action and shipping, the Finnish Navy said in a press release and aims to train participants to work in a multinational environment.

Finnish participants include the Coastal Fleet Katanpää-class miners Chewing head and Maple head and the 4th Mine Action Squadron.

Warship in the port of Turku.
EML Sakala from Estonia.Pontus Nyqvist / Yle

The exercise is hardly, if at all, noticeable to the general public, as the ships move in the archipelago, although the exact locations are confidential. The main focus of the exercise is on underwater activities.

Warship in the port of Turku.
HNLMS Schiedam from the Netherlands.Pontus Nyqvist / Yle

Training also improves KatanpääMine Hunters’ NRF (NATO Response Force) readiness. The NRF is a high-readiness force consisting of units of ground, air, naval and special forces that can be deployed quickly.

The PASSEX exercise is approved by the Ministry of Defense as the 2022 International Defense Forces exercise.

Source: The Nordic Page


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