11:04 GMT27 January 2020
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    Felipe VI attended NATO active phase of the Trident Juncture-2015 military exercises.

    MADRID (Sputnik) – Spanish King Felipe VI attended the North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s (NATO) active phase of the Trident Juncture-2015 military exercises in Spain’s southwestern port of Cadiz, local media reported Monday.

    "The efforts made by Spain for the success of these exercises are enormous," the EFE outlet quoted Felipe VI as saying on board the Juan Carlos I aircraft carrier and multi-purpose amphibious assault ship.

    Spain, alongside Italy and Portugal, hosts the second phase of the largest NATO drills in over a decade, with more than 36,000 troops, 140 aircraft, 90 vessels and submarines from 30 members and partner countries involved.

    Felipe VI, who last week visited San Gregorio Field in the eastern province of Zaragoza where Trident is also held, lauded Spain for "successfully carrying out the bulk of these ambitious exercises."

    The Spanish monarch said Madrid’s commendable efforts related to logistics, communications and real-time coordination among the Trident participants, and expressed pride for his armed forces being "at the forefront in many fronts."

    Around 8,000 Spanish troops, as well as 14 Spanish, British, Turkish and Dutch warships, are taking part in the NATO exercises in Cadiz.

    Trident’s active phase deploys a so-called SOROTAN scenario under the LIVEX exercise, involving a simulated attack by a fictitious "Kamon invasion force" into a sovereign state dubbed "Lakuta" and threatening "Tytan" in the Horn of Africa, according to the Spanish Defense Ministry.

    A small group of anti-war and anti-NATO activists staged protests inside the Retin en Barbate barracks, having stopped one of the military vehicles taking part in Trident. One of the organizers’ representatives accused Madrid of submitting Spanish territory to the drills, "thus making us accomplices of war and militaristic policies that turns us into hostages."


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