The annual largest sea exercise in the Baltic Sea region BALTOPS 2020 (Baltic Operations) has begun. 29 ships, 29 aircraft and helicopters as well as approximately 3,000 soldiers from 19 countries, including 17 NATO member states and 2 partner countries participate in it.
This year’s edition of the exercise will take place only at sea and in the air. This form was adopted to ensure the safety and health of the participating staff. The main elements that will be implemented as part of the exercise include air defense, anti-submarine operations, naval blockade operations and mine operations. The exercise will last until June 16 this year. For the first time, the exercise will be commanded from the land by the Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO Command (STRIKFORNATO) from its permanent headquarters in Lisbon, Portugal. The goal of BALTOPS is to build interoperability between allied and partner countries, strengthen responsiveness, and demonstrate international determination in ensuring stability and security in the Baltic Sea region.