1 May 2015
Norway has welcomed massive NATO anti-submarine drills off its coast due to begin next week, noting the “relevance of such an exercise” in the wake of recent Finland’s and Sweden’s vain hunts for alleged foreign subs suspected to be Russian.
More than 10 military vessels as well as helicopters and up to 5,000 NATO troops will be taking part in the exercise dubbed the “Dynamic Mongoose” between May 4-13, the country's military has announced.
“Norway is dependent on NATO. It is, therefore, important that NATO will come to us to practice and train. This gives us the opportunity to practice with our closest allies,” Commodore Ole Morten Sandquist, chief of the Norwegian Navy's combat force, was quoted as saying.
Norway believes that its underwater topography is ideal to practice tracking down enemy submarines. “Norway is an attractive place to train and practice for foreign forces… it is important for Norway that NATO is good for anti-submarine operations in our region,” Sandquist said.
Earlier this week, the Finnish military claimed it detected an identified foreign submarine in waters near the capital Helsinki and used hand-held underwater depth charges to “let the target know that it has been noticed.”