“The Navy has not fired ‘sea sparrow’ missiles for over ten years and today [last Monday] we fired three missiles successfully,” Calado said.
The Portuguese Navy has launched missiles for the first time in ten years during the largest multinational exercise organised by the force in 2019
About 1,700 military personnel are involved in CONTEX-PHIBEX, the largest multinational naval exercise of the last two years organised by the Portuguese Navy and that also includes the navies of Spain, France, Italy and the U.S., which began on 17 June – the sea phase took off two days later.
On Monday, the day began early, by 6 a.m., and there was the firing of three “sea sparrow” missiles in two exercises, movements that were closely monitored by the Navy Chief of Staff, Admiral Mendes Calado, and by the Naval Commander, Vice-Admiral Gouveia e Melo.
“I am satisfied with what I saw in the naval force and I think the Navy will be ready for the missions that are expected to carry out in the near future.”
Earlier, the “epicentre” of the action was on the frigate Corte-Real, the frigate Álvares Cabral that concentrated all the attention to the morning launch of a missile and then several shots of the 100 mm artillery piece that was targeting an old Navy ship, the Bacamarte.
According to Gouveia and Melo, the importance of the exercise “has to do with training and with the certainty of the capabilities” of the naval force because when these capacities are not used or employed, it is never known whether or not they will fail, if ever needed.