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Aug 1 2020

ACO focuses maritime deterrence and defence

MONS, Belgium - NATO’s continues to fulfil its primary responsibility is to deliver credible and effective deterrence and defence across the Euro-Atlantic Alliance.

The mission of Allied Command Operations (ACO) is to contribute to preserving the peace, security and territorial integrity of NATO member nations in its area of responsibility as the responsible command for all Alliance military operations. This is achieved through missions, operations and training activities throughout the Supreme Allied Commander Europe’s (SACEUR) area of responsibility.

SACEUR’s area of responsibility includes all member nations and areas where NATO troops are operating, such as Afghanistan, Iraq, the Western Balkans and the Mediterranean. Through the coordinated efforts of our Allies and partners, ACO is able to project peace through missions and operations and provide deterrence through tough, realistic training.

NATO provides continuous deterrence and defence through the readiness and flexibility of its forces across all domains

In July, Allies and partners participated in multiple training activities, especially at sea. NATO Operation Sea Guardian (OSG), overseen by Allied Maritime Command, conducted its fourth focused patrol of 2020. OSG is a non-Article 5 maritime security operation aimed at working with Mediterranean stakeholders to maintain maritime situational awareness, deter and counter terrorism and enhance capacity building. This operation remains one of the most important tools for NATO projecting stability throughout the Mediterranean Sea and sustaining maritime situational awareness.

image2-kelly-luB3p1AKSAZ, Turkey - Turkish frigate Turgutreis set sail from Aksaz Naval Base on 16 July as the flagship to the fourth focused patrol of NATO’s Operation Sea Guardian (OSG) in 2020.

Exercise Dynamic Mongoose, in the High North, trained Allies in anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare training, enhancing interoperability, cohesion and assurance measures in this highly contested region.

“NATO provides continuous deterrence and defence through the readiness and flexibility of its forces across all domains. Dynamic Mongoose exercised a variety of Alliance maritime and air capabilities to ensure that our forces remain prepared for any contingency, including in the North Atlantic and the High North,” said General Tim Radford, Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe.


BLACK SEA (July, 25, 2020) Sea Breeze is an annual exercise designed to enhance interoperability among participating nations and strengthen regional security. The exercise began in 1997, bringing Black Sea nations together to train and operate with NATO members to build interoperability and increase capability. (U.S. Navy photo courtesy of Ukrainian Navy/Released)

The 20th iteration of Exercise Sea Breeze, led by the US and Ukraine in the Black Sea, focused on multiple warfare areas including air defence, anti-submarine warfare, damage control, and search and rescue; this involved more than 2,000 personnel. Since its inception in 1997, Exercise Sea Breeze enhances interoperability of participating nations and strengthens maritime security and peace within the region. Six Allies and two partner nations participated in this year’s exercise.


Standing NATO Mine Countermeasures Group Two (SNMCMG2) sails in exercise Breeze in the Black Sea on 14 July 2020. (Photo: SNMCMG2, Hellenic Navy)

“Exercises such as Sea Breeze prove that the United States and NATO partners support peace and stability in the Black Sea region,” said Rear Admiral Oleksiy Neizhpala, Commander Ukrainian Navy.

Readiness and Alliance cohesion are the primary focus points of our military leaders. Developing and maintaining highly trained, ready forces that can integrate seamlessly is the keystone of our collective deterrence and defence.

NATO is postured and ready to deploy forces where needed, when needed to deter and defend against terrorism and tyranny for the safety and security of its members, neighbours and the trans-Atlantic Alliance.

Story by SHAPE Public Affairs Office

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