AWACS Support to NATO Maritime Counter-Terrorism Operation

From Allied Command Operations:  NATO E-3A Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) aircraft from the NATO Air Base in Geilenkirchen, Germany, supported Operation ACTIVE ENDEAVOUR (OAE), NATO’s maritime counter-terrorism operation in the Mediterranean, during the last two weeks. The aircraft operated from the Forward Operating Base in Trapani, Italy. …

OAE, a network based operation which includes NATO and non-NATO force assets, demonstrates the Alliance’s resolve to help defend and protect against the broad terrorist threat using both maritime and supporting air capabilities within the Mediterranean area of operations.

OAE was launched in 2001 following the terrorist attacks against the United States. It has since evolved into a comprehensive counter-terrorism operation that is based on the collection and analysis of information of the maritime traffic and on the surveillance conducted by NATO naval and air units.

Surveillance by military assets is concentrated into specific areas of the Mediterranean with ‘surge’ operations during which larger scale sweeps are conducted to establish presence and monitor maritime activity, with the option of conducting at-sea inspections.  (photo: ACO)

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