NATO: five Allied carrier strike groups patrol waters in NATO’s area of operations

Story by SHAPE Public Affairs Office

Five Allied aircraft carriers will be operating in the Atlantic Ocean and the North and Mediterranean Seas in November, as part of their regularly scheduled activities.

This occurrence presents an opportunity for Allied nations to coordinate credible combat power throughout the Euro-Atlantic Area and showcases NATO cohesion and interoperability.

Participating forces comprise the Carrier Strike Groups (CSG) formed in support of the French Navy Charles De Gaulle, the Italian Navy ITS Cavour, the United Kingdom Royal Navy Queen Elizabeth, and the United States Navy’s George H.W. Bush and Gerald R. Ford.

Five Allied aircraft carriers will be operating in the Atlantic Ocean and the North and Mediterranean Seas in November, as part of their regularly scheduled activities.
The Italian Navy flagship, aircraft carrier ITS Cavour (CVH 550), arrives at Naval Station Norfolk, Virginia, March 26, 2021. The Cavour’s visit was part of a series of operations alongside U.S. Military assets to attain the Italian Navy’s “Ready for Operations” certification to safely land and launch F-35B aircraft. U.S. 2nd Fleet exercises operational authorities over assigned ships, and landing forces on the East Coast and the Atlantic. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Mitchell Banks).

Although each nation’s forces are operating in support of their own mission objectives, the advanced cooperation shows unity towards the collective defence of the Alliance. Ships and assets from various allies and partners are included in the groups, and the activity is coordinated with the Standing NATO Maritime Groups 1 and 2.

“NATO routinely demonstrates its cohesion, coordinating with multiple international maritime assets at once,” said Commander, NATO Allied Maritime Command Vice Admiral Keith Blount. “This opportunity demonstrates our ironclad commitment to the stability and security of the Euro-Atlantic Area and the strength of our collective capability.”

“Five carriers within our operating area presents a further opportunity to consolidate our approach to air defence, cross-domain cooperation and maritime-land integration,” he said.

Five Allied aircraft carriers will be operating in the Atlantic Ocean and the North and Mediterranean Seas in November, as part of their regularly scheduled activities.
An MH-60S Nighthawk helicopter, attached to Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 5, takes off from the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77), Nov. 11, 2022. The George H.W. Bush CSG is on a scheduled deployment in the U.S. Naval Forces Europe area of operations, employed by U.S. Sixth Fleet to defend U.S., allied, and partner interests. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Curtis Burdick)

There is a continuous presence of Allied aircraft carriers around the NATO area of operations, and it is common for multiple CSGs to be deployed simultaneously. The multi-carrier deployment is an opportunity to test the cooperation and practice NATO’s Deter and Defend concept as it leverages a deliberate rhythm of military activity across all geographic areas of the Alliance, as well as across all operational domains and functional areas.

Allied maritime forces and NATO Maritime Groups regularly patrol the waters around Europe to assure Allies of the maritime commitment to collective defence.

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