On June 19th, an Operational Group of EUROMARFOR was activated in Lisbon to participate in Exercise CONTEX/PHIBEX 23.

CONTEX/PHIBEX 23 is an advanced naval exercise which will be carried out in Portuguese military exercise ranges in the Atlantic Ocean from the 19th to the 30th of June conducted by the Naval Commandant of the Portuguese Navy, Admiral Nuno Chaves Ferreira with participation of 12 warships (8 Portuguese, 2 Spanish and 2 Italian), as well as Marine Corps units from those nations and Portuguese Air Force aircraft. It will simulate a Crisis Response Operation in an international scenario under multiple threats.

EUROMARFOR is a non-standing Multinational Maritime Force with naval, air and amphibious capabilities. With variable sizes, it was set up in 1995 to implement the missions included in the Petersberg Declaration like humanitarian aid missions, peacekeeping, crisis response operations, preventive deployments, maritime patrols and minesweeping.

The Command of EUROMARFOR rotates every two years among the four participants: Spain, France, Italy and Portugal. The current command is held by the Spanish Fleet Commander (ALFLOT) which ends in September 2023.

Commander Alfonso Moreno CO of frigate ‘Santa María’ will hold the tactical command of the Operational Group (COMGRUEUROMARFOR) made up by the Spanish frigate (F-81), the Portuguese offshore patrol vessel ‘Sines’ (P-362) and the Italian frigate ‘Carlo Margottini’ (F-592).

The frigate ‘Santa María’, with her multinational Staff on board, has also been flagship of the advanced Exercise FLOTEX-23 (05 – 16 JUN) and so, she has been holding command of a multinational task group for more than a month.

The participation of EUROMARFOR in this exercise shows the commitment of the nations involved to the readiness of their forces, providing a secure maritime environment.