The Canale Exercise was an annual live exercise organised bilaterally between Malta and Italy. It aimed to promote cooperation, security and peace in the Mediterranean by conducting naval and air operations involving units from the Maltese and Italian Armed Forces and other invited nations from the Mediterranean.
One of the interesting naval assets was the Soldati class light frigates, operational with the Italian Navy MM ARTIGLIERE F 582. She was built by Fincantieri at Ancona shipyard as F 14 HITTIN. Together with her 3 sisters they were initially built for Iraq, but delivery was cancelled following the United Nations embargoes against Iraq in 1990.
New weapons and communications systems were fitted to meet the requirements of the Italian Navy. Marina Militare (MM) Artigliere (F582), MM Aviere (F583) and MM Granitiere (F585) built at Ancona, were commissioned in 1994, 1995 and 19 96. The last one MM Bersagliere (F584), commissioned in 1995, was built at the Riva Trigosa shipyards in Genoa and decommissioned on 17th April 2018.
Interesting to see the telescopic hangar which housed 1 x AB212ASW MM81081/7-36 helicopter from 4 Grupelicot.
The exercise’s stated aim is achieved through improving cooperation and the operational capabilities of the participating air and naval forces in peace-support operations, which include: Maritime Search and Rescue (SAR) of persons and aircraft/boat/vessel in distress; Checks and inspections of merchant ships, suspected of illegal activities (MLE- Maritime Law Enforcement Operations).
Training during the exercise is scheduled throughout to develop in different phases and evolutions, each with the aim of training the units the correct use of standard distress alerts and maritime SAR procedures for missing persons and ships.
Photos by Capt. Lawrence Dalli. Do not use these images without my permission. © All rights reserved. Malta Ship Photos & Action Photos – www.maltashipphotos.com
Published – Tuesday 1st October 2019