Distinguished Guests and Media day at int'l operation Open Spirit, exercise Port Protection
Distinguished Guests and Media day at int'l operation Open Spirit, exercise Port Protection

On 14 May, Distinguished Guests and Media Day of international military maritime Operation Open Spirit 2019 and Exercise Port Protection 2019 will take place at the Cruise and Warship Terminal in Klaipeda, Lithuania's Ministry of National Defence said.

Participating media representatives will be able to observe soldiers of the Lithuanian Navy, Lithuanian Air Force helicopter, Lithuanian Navy port area patrol cutters, and armoured vehicles of the NATO enhanced Forward Presence Battalion Battle Group Lithuania take part in an integrated port protection exercise from the port security post. The training audience will showcase their skills to respond to and counter attacks and provocations against the infrastructure of Klaipeda Seaport. After the exercise interview opportunities with exercise organisers will be provided.

International historical explosive ordnance disposal operation Open Spirit 2019 began in the territorial waters and exclusive economic zones of Lithuania and Latvia on May 2-3 when warships of the NATO allies sailed into Klaipeda. Active phase of the operation was preceded by a planning conference, then, May 6, twelve guest and 2 Lithuanian Navy ships (Skalvis (M53) and Kurđis (M54) took to the sea to carry out naval mine hunting and sweeping operation.

The operation is taking place concurrently with international exercise Port Protection 2019 which began on April 25 and has never been held before. A port security post has been opened for exercise purposes at the Cruise and Warship Terminal. The training event is co-organised by the Lithuanian Navy and the NATO Centre of Excellence for Operations in Confined and Shallow Waters in Germany and attended by Lithuanian Navy soldiers, the German Naval Force Protection Battalion and the Bundeswehr Research Institute.

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