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Friday 28.02.2020 | Name days: Skaidrīte, Justs, Skaidra
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Standing NATO Mine Countermeasure Group 1 to arrive in Liepaja

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUBetween 1st and 3rd November SNMCMG1 ships of the Standing NATO Mine Countermeasure Group 1 will be visiting Liepaja port. SNMCMG1 group also includes Latvia’s Navy ships M-06 Tālivaldis, as reported by Naval Forces Coast Guard.

On Saturday, 2 November, two SNMCMG1 ships – Norwegian mine sweeper Rauma and German minelayer Wilheim – as well as Latvian naval headquarters and supply ship Virsaitis will be available for residents to come on board at Liepaja port’s dock 84.

During the visit to the port, SNMCMG1 specialist divers will meet with unexploded ordnance disposal specialists of NATO’s combat group in Latvia. Troops of both groups provide support to the alliance by disposing unexploded ordnance. During the meeting, SNMCMG1 sappers will present their infantry colleagues with their equipment and their work in general.

From 4 to 14 November SNMCMG1 group ships will organize in exercises Hod ops in Irbe Strait. The main objective of these exercises is improving the skills of SNMCMG1 and BALTRON mine-sweeping operations, as well as locating remaining explosives left from the First and Second World War to help increase safety for ships in the Baltic Sea.

SNMCMG1 ships – Danish frigate Thetis, Norwegian minelayer Rauma, British mine destroyer Cattistock, Dutch mine sweeper Urk, German minelayer Weilheim and Latvian mine ship Tālivaldis. As for BALTRON, participants will include Latvian headquarters and supply ship Virsaitis, mine ship Rūsiņš and a team of divers, as well as Lithuanian Navy mine sweeper Skalvis.

NATO Mine Countermeasure Group 1 (SNMCMG1) is one of four standing NATO Naval Force groups. NATO Standing Naval Force groups are composed of naval components of the NATO Response Force, which functions as a rapid response force. NATO Mine Countermeasure Group 1 is one of two of the alliance’s naval multinational units formed to perform mine countermeasure operations.

Latvia’s armed forces have been represented in NATO Mine Countermeasure Group 1 since 2007.

BALTRON was formed in August 1998 to ensure standing rapid response capabilities at sea during peace time and crises. Its first commander was Latvian sea captain Ilmārs Lešinskis.

Keywords: Liepaja NATO navy


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