A major exercise held in the Mediterranean Sea, Dynamic Mariner 2020 helped prepare the French Aero-Naval Rapid Reaction Force for command of NATO’s Maritime Component this year.
One of NATO’s largest maritime events, Exercise Dynamic Mariner 2020 was held off the shores of Corsica and Hyères, in the western Mediterranean Sea last utumn. It involved 31 ships and one submarine, drawn from the Belgian, Dutch, French, Italian and Spanish navies, plus 36 fixed-wing aircraft and at least 14 helicopters. Aircraft from the Armée de l’Air et de l’Espace (French Air and Space Force, FASF) and the Aéronautique Navale (or Aéronavale, French Naval Aviation) were also involved.
The exercise’s objective was to prepare the French Aero-Naval Rapid Reaction Force (FRMARFOR) for command of NATO’s Maritime Component from January this year. Its secondary goal was to enhance the level of interoperability of the participating naval forces with France. Dynamic Mariner 2020 saw many roles being tested – maritime air defence and counter-air, counter piracy, counter weapon and drug smuggling, demining and amphibious assault operations were all practised.