Change of Command of NATO’s Standing Maritime Group Two (SNMG2)

Wednesday, July 01, 2020

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Change of Command of Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 (SNMG2)
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Change of Command of Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 (SNMG2)

The Italian frigate ‘Virginio Fasan’ docked at Rota Naval Base, was the venue for the change of command ceremony of the Standing NATO Maritime Group Two (SNMG2). The command of the Group had been held by Italian Admiral Paolo Fantoni and has now been taken over by Spanish Navy Captain Manuel Aguirre Aldereguía.

The ceremony was attended by Admiral Eugenio Díaz del Río, (COMSPMARFOR) and the Admiral of the Cadiz Arsenal, Ricardo Atanasio Hernández López. After the handover, the F-100 frigate ‘Álvaro de Bazán’ will become flagship of the SNMG2, one of NATO’s permanent fleets with the Black Sea and the Eastern Mediterranean as its preferential scenario of operations during the next months.

NATO's standing naval groups have a high level of readiness and availability and have a wide range of capabilities at the disposal of the Alliance. SNMG2 is an immediate reaction maritime force made up of a variable number of destroyers or frigates, whose main mission is to provide NATO with an immediate operational reaction capability in naval scenarios. The Spanish Navy has maintained a continuous presence in these groups for more than thirty years.

Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 (SNMG2)

This group has been involved in several real operations; namely, the Balkan crisis of the 1990s, NATO's operation ‘Active Endeavour’ fighting international terrorism and preventing arms trafficking in 2011/2016; and since 2009, it has regularly deployed in the Indian Ocean in the framework of Operation ‘Ocean Shield’ to fight piracy off the coast of Somalia, and to protect World Food Program (WFP) ships.

‘Álvaro de Bazán’ frigate (F-101)

Commanded by Captain Ricardo Gómez Delgado, she is part of the 31st Escort Squadron stationed in Ferrol (NW Spain). During her integration in SNMG-2 she will visit the ports of Burgas (Bulgaria), Odessa (Ukraine), Piraeus (Greece), Algiers (Algeria), Antalya (Turkey), Souda (Greece), Toulon (France), Cartagena (Spain) and Aksaz (Turkey), where she will be relieved by the F-105 frigate ‘Cristóbal Colón’.


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