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Jul 15 2021

NATO CAOC and AGS leadership compare notes

SIGONELLA, Italy - On July 15, the Commander of NATO's Southern Combined Air Operations Centre (CAOC) at Torrejón, Spain, Lieutenant General Fernando de la Cruz, visited the main operating base of the NATO Alliance Ground Surveillance Force (NAGSF) at Sigonella Air Base, Italy, to discuss coordination and cooperation between the two NATO bodies.

The NAGSF Commander, Brigadier General Houston Cantwell, and his team, introduced General de la Cruz to the mission, the RQ-4D unmanned aerial vehicle and the processes behind gathering, analysing and distributing Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) data in support of Alliance decision-making.

The NATO AGS Force will continue to work closely with CAOC Torrejón on our path to become NATO's indications and warning cornerstone
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Lieutenant General Fernando De La Cruz Caravaca, Commander of Combined Air Operations Centre Torrejon, visits NATO Air Ground SurveillanceForce in Sigonella, Italy. Photo courtesy of AGSF Staff.  

"Every NATO AGS ISR mission flies through CAOC Torrejón airspace. It's paramount that we understand one another's operating procedures while always looking for ways to improve efficiency and effectiveness," said Brigadier General Houston Cantwell, NAGSF Commander. "This visit helped us do just that by enhancing our shared understanding of one another. I congratulate General de la Cruz and his team for their effective command and control of NATO airspace south of the Alps. The NATO AGS Force will continue to work closely with CAOC Torrejón on our path to become NATO's indications and warning cornerstone," he added.

We use each other's products and services for our daily decision-making and in mission planning and execution in order to secure the airspace of the Alliance

"It is good to meet with General Cantwell and talk about our how we can continue to work together and further enhance our cooperation and improve coordination," said Lieutenant General de la Cruz. "Our two organisations are located in NATO's area south of the Alps and we share some common ground. We use each other's products and services for our daily decision-making and in mission planning and execution in order to secure the airspace of the Alliance," he added.

Since 2019, NATO AGS has provided unique source for NATO leadership in the field of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance across the Alliance. The CAOC maintaining 24/7 awareness of air activities in the skies above the Allies in NATO's south planning and executing the Air Policing mission to safeguard the skies. Both organisations work based on integrating NATO staff from several Allies into their day-to-day work showcasing how all NATO members contribute their share to a ready and reliable organisation.

Story by Allied Air Command Public Affairs Office

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