RAMSTEIN, Germany - On July 2, NATO Air and Maritime forces conducted an Air Defence Exercise (ADEX) in the Black Sea to improve Alliance cooperation, practise air-maritime communications and build stronger relationships between Allies.
Participation included Allied fighter assets from the Greek, Romanian and Turkish air forces, a NATO AWACS, a Romanian C-27 transport aircraft, a Turkish Military Patrol Aircraft and three Allied frigates from the Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 (SNMG2) – Italian Navy flagship Fasan, the Romanian Navy Regina Maria and the Turkish Navy Barbaros. SNMG 2 forces are transiting across the Black Sea and will take part in Exercise Sea Breeze 2021 after the ADEX.
The air-maritime integration training demonstrates NATO's capabilities, readiness and resolve to protect Allied populations; with our ships and aircraft peacefully operating off the Romanian coast we also assure the Allies in the region
While initially Turkish Air Force F-16 fighters simulated attacks on the NATO ships which trained defence drills against these attacked, the Greek and Romanian F-16s, in a separate event, conducted similar training manoeuvres with the Greek fighters attacking the ships which responded in a joint manner with the Romanian fighters. Subsequently, the Greek and Romanian fighters conduct air-to-air combat drills.
A Romanian Air Force C-27 transport aircraft took off from Otopeni Air Base near Bucharest with media on board to see the fighter aircraft involved in the ADEX. Photo by Brett Dodge
Initially, Turkish Air Force F-16 fighters conducted ADEX maneouvres with the NATO ships. Archive picture by Turkish Air Force.
A NATO AWACS aircraft from Geilenkirchen, Germany, supported the training activity by providing airborne control of the fighter activity. Photo by Bogdan Pantilimon.
This exercise shows how Allies use unique opportunities to train multiple Allied forces in a multi-domain environment. By exercising in international waters and airspace just off the Romanian coast, NATO is able to further develop our operational tactics and refine airspace coordination with our Black Sea Allies. Allied Air Command experts in cooperation with the Combined Air Operations Centre at Torrejón, Allied Maritime Command and the participating nations planned the event over a number of weeks.
"Overall the air-maritime integration training demonstrates NATO's capabilities, readiness and resolve to protect Allied populations; with our ships and aircraft peacefully operating off the Romanian coast we also assure the Allies in the region," said Allied Air Command Deputy Chief of Staff Brigadier General Andrew Hansen. "Our jets are unarmed to enable maximum training benefit and allowing for interoperability among the four Allies' fighters," he added.