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The F-81 frigate 'Santa María' monitors and tracks the Russian submarine as it passes through Spanish waters of interest.

Mediterranean sea
December 19, 2023
  • Monitoring is integrated into Presence, Surveillance and Deterrence Operations.
The frigate 'Santa María' set sail on 15 December to control the transit of the Russian submarine 'Ufa' and its logistical support vessel (both Russian) within Spanish waters of interest in the Mediterranean, in coordination with NATO and the maritime resources of the allied countries.
These Russian units have been monitored by the Navy since 12 December by the patrol vessel 'Centinela', which ceded escort to the Portuguese navy in its waters, and subsequently, Spain resumed it through the frigate 'Santa Maria' at the limit of the Atlantic Exclusive Economic Zone south of the Guadiana. Tracking by the Spanish frigate has ended when the Russian units have left Spanish waters of interest.
These missions are directed and coordinated by the Maritime Operational Command, under the operational control of the Operations Command, within the Presence, Surveillance and Deterrence Operations.

Maritime Operational Command

The Maritime Operational Command is the body within the operational structure of the Armed Forces, subordinate to the Chief of Defence Staff (JEMAD) responsible, at his level, for planning, conducting and monitoring permanent surveillance and security operations in maritime areas of sovereignty, responsibility and national interest. It is under the command of the Admiral of Maritime Action and is based in Cartagena.

Presence, Surveillance and Deterrence Operations

Presence, Surveillance and Deterrence Operations are an effective tool for maintaining surveillance of sovereign spaces, enabling early detection of threats and facilitating an immediate and viable response to a potential crisis.
The Land, Maritime, Aerospace and Cyberspace Operational Commands make up the Permanent Command structure. On a daily basis, some 3,000 Armed Forces personnel are involved in such operations under the operational control of the Operations Command.