October 22, 2018 – NATO allies gathered together in Reykjavik, Iceland for a Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO pre-sail conference in support of NATO-led exercise Trident Juncture 18 Oct. 20.
The purpose of the conference was for all participating nations to finalize schedule components, greater understanding of the exercise overview and for senior leaders to meet their foreign colleagues face-to-face.
Exercise Trident Juncture 18 will take place in Norway, Sweden, and Finland beginning this month, with expected participation of more than 50,000 troops from more than 30 NATO member and partner nations. It will be one of NATO’s largest exercises in recent history.
“This exercise is about commitment, cohesion, capability and readiness from all of our allies,” said Vice Adm. Lisa M. Franchetti, commander of U.S. 6th Fleet and Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO. “No single nation can address today’s challenges alone and Trident Juncture demonstrates our combined and enduring willingness to work toward our common goals of regional security and stability.”
“NATO exercise Trident Juncture provides a great opportunity to deploy, employ and redeploy in order to exercise our warfighting capabilities with our NATO partners, improve our interoperability, and deter potential adversaries,” said Brig. Gen. Stephen M. Neary, the commanding general of the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade. “We are showing our commitment to the Alliance and our ability to replicate these capabilities to our partners around the world.”
In addition to notes from key participants of the exercise, meetings were held onboard the amphibious assault ship USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7), the Royal Canadian navy Halifax-class frigate HMCS Halifax (FFH 330), the Danish Navy Thetis-class ocean patrol vessel HDMS Hvidbjoernen, and the Royal Navy Type 23 frigates HMS Westminster (F237) and HMS Northumberland (F238). These specialized meetings allowed NATO allies to discuss the capabilities and expectations of logistics, communications and other vital factors during Trident Junction. Sixty-five ships, more than 10,000 vehicles and more than 150 aircraft will be used throughout the duration of Trident Juncture, which takes place from Oct. 25 to Nov. 23.