MOSCOW (Sputnik) — This year, Algeria, Egypt, Greece, Italy, Malta, Mauritania, Morocco, Spain, Tunisia, Turkey and the United States, representatives from the NATO Shipping Center, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the EU border management agency Frontex are taking part in the drills.
The naval part of the exercises will test the sides’ abilities to respond to challenges of migration, trafficking and the movement of weapons. They will also conduct search and rescue operations.
This is the tenth iteration of these drills, while this year they are taking place against the backdrop of the global migrant crisis.
The Mediterranean Sea is one of the main routes for migrants attempting to flee armed conflicts in North Africa and the Middle East. The Central Mediterranean route leads from Libya to Malta or Italy.