A look at the Defence news 4 September – 10 September

NATO ships are monitoring a large number of Russian navy vessels in the east of the Mediterranean Sea. The Russian ships and submarines are taking part in an exercise. However, they also under scrutiny because of Russian involvement in Syria. The Royal Netherlands Navy (RNLN) ship HNLMS De Ruyter is the flagship for the NATO fleet. The De Ruyter is sailing with the frigates Ville de Quebec (Canada), HS Elli (Greece) and Cristóbal Colon (Spain). The fleet is NATO’s maritime rapid reaction force. Commodore Boudewijn Boots (RNLN) is currently in charge of the fleet.

German-Dutch cooperation on evacuation exercise

The German Seebataillon and the logistics support and supply ship HNLMS Karel Doorman practised large scale evacuation operations this week. In previous years, Exercise Schneller Adler was fully German. That it was now a combined exercise with the Royal Netherlands Navy (RNLN) symbolises the increasingly close cooperation between the two armed forces.  Previously, the exercise took place on land only, using helicopters. This time, the backdrop included the German port of Rostock and the Karel Doorman. In the combined operation, the Seebattaillon and the RNLN evacuated civilians by sea. In what is called a non-combatant evacuation operation (NEO), civilians were extracted from imaginary areas of conflict and from areas under an imaginary terrorist threat.