NATO Maritime Commander visits SNMG2 in Aegean Sea
Commander of NATO’s Allied Maritime Command, Vice Admiral Clive Johnstone, visited the Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 currently deployed to the Aegean with the task of combating migrant smuggling.
The Commander went on board the German combat support ship EGV Bonn, the flagship of SNMG as the ship continues its activities in the Aegean Sea.
During the visit Vice Admiral Johnstone met with Rear Admiral Jörg Klein, Commander, SNMG2 to discuss the Bonn’s current activities. He also observed a simultaneous replenishment-at-sea-manoeuver (RAS) with the two frigates Greek HS Salamis and Turkish TCG Barbaros. The British landing ship dock auxiliary (LSD(A)) Mounts Bay acted as lifeguard station.
“SNMG2 is demonstrating here in the Aegean how NATO can work effectively with FRONTEX and national authorities in support of the international effort against human trafficking,” said Vice Admiral Johnstone.
Rear Admiral Jörg Klein, Commander SNMG2, added: “The visit of COM MARCOM shows the importance of what we are doing here. It is much easier to communicate face-to-face than by using telephone or email, especially when it comes to discussing such detailed issues. It was also a statement to the crew and the other ships of SNMG2, to honour what they are doing.”
Bonn is currently patrolling the Aegean Sea, conducting reconnaissance, monitoring and surveillance activities as directed, and is sharing information with Turkish and Greek authorities and the European Union’s border agency, FRONTEX, to assist in the international efforts to counter human trafficking and criminal networks in the region.