Minehunter Zierikzee is back in Den Helder May 1 after three months of NATO deployment. The ship was active in northern waters for the fleet of SNMCMG1. The defusing of explosives at sea is one of the main tasks of this group of ships. The Zierikzee did this in Estonian waters, among other places.

The 35-strong crew took part in several international exercises. For example, Zierikzee was active in Norway for the extensive NATO exercise Steadfast Defender. During that period, the ship visited the Hammerfest in the far north.

Since mid-April, the Zierikzee has been participating in exercise Open Spirit. This is a large-scale operation in the Baltic Sea, this year organized by Estonia. Together with numerous international ships, the Dutch minehunter went in search of mines and other explosives. Among other things, the partners were able to coordinate their procedures.

There are an estimated 50,000 mines in the area that date back to the Second World War. Of these, 23 were found and cleared in a week’s time, 3 of them by the Zierikzee. After this, the naval ship set sail again for Den Helder.