Turkish Armed Forces to Launch Naval Exercise in Aegean Sea

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An expansive naval exercise, dubbed "Thalassolukos," is set to kick off tomorrow, Tuesday, May 7, as announced by the Turkish armed forces.

The exercise, spanning the Aegean Sea, Eastern Mediterranean, Sea of Marmara, and Black Sea, marks the second phase of this year's manoeuvres.

Previously held between January 7 and 16, the first phase laid the groundwork for the forthcoming operations. This subsequent phase, running until May 18, is poised to involve an array of naval assets.

Speaking at a press briefing held today at the Turkish Navy headquarters in Goljuk, Propodida, Commander-in-Chief Kaan Turkkan detailed the participation of 100 surface ships, eight submarines, 39 aircraft, 16 helicopters, 28 drones, seven kamikaze boats, along with specialised teams and support vessels. Notably, the flagship of the Turkish fleet, the state-of-the-art mini aircraft carrier and amphibious operations vessel "Anadolu," will lead the exercises.

Live-fire drills are scheduled for May 12 and 13, following a ceremonial hosting of guests at the Aqsaz Naval Base on May 11. The culmination of the exercise will see participating ships visiting 27 ports across the region on May 17 and 18.

An operations centre, staffed by 104 naval personnel, has been established to oversee the exercise, coordinating media engagement across various platforms, including television, digital media, and social media.

Commander Turkkan emphasised the exercise's objectives, aimed at evaluating operational effectiveness, enhancing command capabilities, and testing interoperability in a multi-threat environment. Additionally, it seeks to refine forecasting and decision-making mechanisms among naval personnel and units participating in the exercise.

The decision to proceed with the Thalassolukos exercise comes after its cancellation in 2023, attributed to improved relations between Turkey and Greece, as reported by Turkish daily Milliyet.

(Source: Amna)

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