June 18, 2020 – Royal Navy warships have wrapped up the largest military exercise of 2020 in European waters.
Frigate HMS Kent and minehunter HMS Ramsey flew the flag for the Royal Navy, while RAF Typhoons stationed in Lithuania joined in the aerial element of NATO’s BALTOPS.
Crews of both ships say the two-week workout proved to be a supreme test – and makes them better prepared for global challenges, individually or working side-by-side with our allies.
More than two dozen vessels, led by the US Navy’s amphibious command ship Mount Whitney, a similar number of aircraft and upwards of 3,000 military personnel threw their hat in the ring for the 49th iteration of BALTOPS.
The exercise underlines the importance of the region to NATO – and demonstrates the ability and resolve of the alliance and partner nations to safeguard the freedom of nations on its shores, as well as keeping the sea lanes open.
Planners gave participants seven days to hone individual and collective skills, training side-by-side in numerous demanding scenarios (anti-submarine warfare, air attacks – including Banshee drones which bore down on Kent’s upper deck gunners – resupplying on the go, and combined maneuvers), before a rather more free-flowing four-day-long tactical exercise.