Joint Arctic naval exercise

POMOR 2010: RFS Severomorsk, KV Nordkapp and KNM Otto Sverdrup

Norwegian and Russian military vessels, planes and helicopters will join forces in Arctic waters for ten days in May.

Military officials from both countries are today and Tuesday sitting together at the Norwegian Joint Headquarters in Bodø planning the details for the bi-lateral exercise named Pomor-2011.

The exercise will start at the Russian Northern fleet’s main base Severomorsk on May 7th and ends in Tromsø in northern Norway on May 17th.

- Norwegian and Russian forces will train on complex situations, ranging from voyages and communications to joint shooting, boarding operations and interactions with aircrafts, says Lieutenant Colonel John Espen Lien, spokesman with the Norwegian Joint Headquarters to BarentsObserver.

The exercise takes place in the Barents- and Norwegian Seas.

Pomor-2011 will demonstrate that Norwegian and Russian forces can operate together to solve tasks in the High North.

The first Pomor exercise took place in 1994 in the waters outside northern Norway from Tromsø to Kirkenes. In last year’s Pomor exercise, Norwegian and Russian naval vessels sailed from Haakonsvern near Bergen to Severomorsk. Along the way they trained on maneuvering, communication, shooting, search and rescue and anti-piracy combat. 

- Both Norway and Russia has for years been focusing on rescue operations, sea transport and management of fishery resources. Increased contact builds trust and friendship. That forms a good basis for all types of cooperation in a period of low tension, says Lieutenant Colonel John Espen Lien.

- Communication and cooperation with the Russian military is important to avoid misunderstandings and conflict, says Lien.

Norway will participate with one of its new frigates, coast guards vessels, aircrafts and helicopters. The Russian Northern fleet will send at least one of its destroyers of the Udaloy-class. Details are to be published later.

Read also: Three international exercises for the Northern Fleet in 2011

Pomor-2011 will take place in a period including the most prominent public holidays in Norway and Russia. May 9th is celebrated in Russia as the end of the Great Patriotic War (2nd WW).  The last day of the exercise, 17th of May, is Norway’s constitution day and the vessels involved will then be portside in Tromsø.