STRIKFORNATO and U.S. Sixth Fleet Staffs Complete Operations in the Mediterranean and Black Seas

The U.S. Sixth Fleet (SIXTHFLT) flagship, USS Mount Whitney (LCC 20), and embarked SIXTHFLT and Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO (STRIKFORNATO) staffs, returned to Gaeta, Italy, Nov. 18.

The ship departed Gaeta, Oct. 29, to operate alongside NATO Allies and partners in the Mediterranean and Black Seas….

The ship and her crew demonstrated that commitment throughout the underway period, conducting port calls in Istanbul, Turkey; Batumi, Georgia; and Constanta, Romania while sailing alongside the Bulgarian, Romanian, Turkish and Ukrainian Navies and the Georgian Coast Guard in the Black Sea. Mount Whitney entered the Black Sea Nov. 4 and departed Nov. 15.

NATO’s presence was felt on the decks of Mount Whitney throughout the underway period, as well as in the operations and port visits the ship conducted with Allies and partners in the region. NATO Allies and partners stand together to ensure a safe, stable and secure Europe, building partner capacity to improve effectiveness and interoperability.

“The STRIKFORNATO and SIXTHFLT team have shown how capable we are when we work together as a combined battle staff and with our NATO Allies and partners,” said Rear Adm. James Morley, STRIKFORNATO’s Deputy Commander….

USS Mount Whitney, Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Porter and Bulgarian frigate Gordi on November 4. Photo: Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO.