Exercises such as Trident Juncture enable us to build trust in each other and our capabilities and the manoeuvres this morning demonstrate that we can work seamlessly together.

Rear Admiral Radakin

Exercise Trident Juncture is the largest NATO exercise in over a decade involving 36,000 personnel and 60 warships from 30 nations.

It is one of a series of long-planned exercises to ensure that NATO Allies are ready to deal with any emerging crisis, from any direction, and that they are able to work effectively with partners in tackling any crisis.

Commanding the Officer of the Watch manoeuvres was Rear Admiral Tony Radakin, Commander of the UK Maritime Forces, but also the senior officer in charge of NATO’s Maritime Forces for Exercise Trident Juncture and throughout the whole of 2016 when the UK takes charge of the NATO Response Force.

Based in the Royal Navy’s flagship HMS Ocean, Adm Radakin said: “It’s a rare privilege to command and train alongside such a formidable line up of warships, from so many of our allies. 

"It feels ‘real’ - training in purely national lines is comfortable but in reality navies operate as international coalitions, with a multiplicity of accents and perspectives reflecting the NATO’s allies commitment to each other. 

“Exercises such as Trident Juncture enable us to build trust in each other and our capabilities and the manoeuvres this morning demonstrate that we can work seamlessly together.”

Trident Juncture started at the beginning of October with a virtual, “table top” scenario and has now moved to the “Live” phase looking at how situations would be dealt with in the real world.

For the 60 NATO warships, this has meant a series of amphibious raids, anti-submarine drills and air defence exercises against Typhoon Eurofighters.

The next phase of the exercise is “Theatre Entry” when the ships drop troops ashore in order to bring order back to a fictional country – this phase takes place in Spain and Portugal at the start of November.