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Spanish frigate ‘Cristóbal Colón’ sets off to resume its integration within NATO’s permanent naval group (SNMG-2)

Ferrol, Spain
January 9, 2021
  • Frigate ‘Cristobal Colón’ (F-105) sets off today, after finishing its winter dispersal in Ferrol´s dockyard, in order to continue its mission as joint naval group’s flagship.

The ‘Cristobal Colón’ moored last Dec. 18th in Ferrol´s dockyard to complete its winter dispersal, a crew resting period and ship maintenance that takes place in winter as well as in summer in all NATO naval groups. The ship kept its readiness to get back to the sea in a brief notice if the NATO naval command had require to do so. Thus, all crew members kept a continuous onboard quarantine since the arrival of the warship to Ferrol up until its departure, which finished yesterday, when the whole crew was tested, ensuring protection against COVID-19 on the F-105.

SNMG-2 is part of NATO's Standing Naval Forces, where allies' naval and air assets are integrated. From June 2020 until June 2021, Spanish Rear Admiral Manuel Aguirre is commanding the group embarked, along with his General Staff, on the Spanish frigate 'Cristóbal Colón'. The purpose of this naval force is to provide NATO with an immediate operational reaction capability on naval scenarios. The Spanish Navy has maintained its presence in these groups for more than thirty years.

During its integration, frigate 'Cristóbal Colón' will contribute to operations by providing a high capability for defence and air detection thanks to its AEGIS combat system and the SPY-1D (V) multifunction radar. Its crew is made up of more than 220 men and women, and a squad of marines as Security Team, a SH-60B helicopter and the Commander's Staff. Ship's Commander is Frigate captain Juan Bautista Payá Martínez.