Assessment of the Franco-Greek Operational Cooperation

Deployed in the Mediterranean Sea to help protect the approaches to Europe, the Naval Air Group (GAN) operated with the Greek armed forces during the CLEMENCEAU 22 mission. Military cooperation with Greece has thus taken on a new dimension. passing from a logic of development of interoperability to an operational logic.

From February 1, the first day of the CLEMENCEAU 22 mission, the Greek frigate Adrias was integrated into the GAN in order to participate in the protection of the aircraft carrier Charles De Gaulle . At the beginning of March, when the GAN returned to the central Mediterranean to help strengthen NATO’s deterrent and defensive posture on the eastern flank of Europe, the frigate Hydra , in turn, joined the GAN for a month. At the same time, the GAN was able to count on the support of a Greek submarine. Finally, the integration of a Greek liaison officer within the GAN staff facilitated tactical coordination between these units.

Several sequences of operational cooperation were organized during the mission. The aircraft of the on-board air group thus trained with the Hellenic Air Force: aerial combat, area defense, live bombings on Greek exercise fields followed one another until the major exercise INIOCHOS 22 which ended on April 1. The surface ships and submarines also had intense naval combat preparation sequences which culminated in LA SIRENE training, a naval combat simulation involving the GAN, as well as Greek ships and submarines from the 31 March to April 2.

Franco-Greek cooperation also finds a very concrete application in the field of logistics. Throughout its deployment in the central Mediterranean, the GAN was able to rely on the logistics support point of La Sude, on the island of Crete. Movement of personnel, spare parts, supplies of all kinds have multiplied thanks to the support of local authorities.

This partnership was also illustrated by visits from senior civil and military authorities, as evidenced by the arrival on board of the Minister for the Armed Forces, the Speaker of the Greek Parliament and the Greek Minister of Defense on March 24 on the carrier. Charles De Gaulle planes , at anchor in front of the port of Piraeus. The next day, a detachment of sailors from the frigate Alsace and the Rafale Marine took part in the Greek National Day parade.

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