July 3, 2014 - Four NATO ships entered the Black Sea today in a regularly scheduled deployment to enhance NATO solidarity and readiness in the region.
The ships are from the Standing NATO Mine Counter-Measures Group TWO (SNMCMG2), one of four NATO fleets that operate on a rotational basis. The NATO commander leading the formation is Captain Giovanni Piegaja of the Italian Navy. His flagship is an Italian Navy frigate, the ITS Aviere, which is accompanied by the ITS Rimini, also of the Italian Navy, the TCG Akçay of the Turkish Navy and the HMS Chiddingfold of the Royal Navy (UK).
SNMCMG2’s deployment to the Black Sea will include a visit to the port of Burgas, in Bulgaria on 4 July and participation in the Bulgarian Navy led Exercise BREEZE. Later in July the NATO ships will visit Romania, where additional collective training has been organized.