April 12, 2020 (Google Translation) – This Saturday April 10, the M917 Crocus mine hunter left the port of Zeebrugge to join the Standing NATO Mine Counter Measure Group 1 (SNMCMG1) fleet for eight weeks. This is currently under Dutch command.
From August to November, the ship and her crew had already participated in this permanent NATO fleet. Everyone therefore knows the work, the mission and its constraints.
In order to prepare as well as possible and avoid contamination, the minehunter’s crew has been in home confinement for the past two weeks.
This commitment will pursue four objectives:
- allow NATO to have a permanent fleet ready to respond to crises or conflicts;
- strengthen NATO’s presence at the borders of its territory, in particular in the Baltic Sea;
- carry out surveillance tasks in the region;
- increase international cooperation and the level of interoperability between different NATO member nations by training and operating jointly;
- reduce the risk posed by historic marine mines to navigation, fishing and ecology by conducting minehunting operations in the Baltic Sea.