On Friday 11th May 2018, the closing ceremony (hot wash-up) of the «PHOENIX EXPRESS 2018» exercise took place at the facilities of NATO Maritime Interdiction Operational Training Centre (NMIOTC), in Souda Naval Base, with the presence of the deputy Chief of the Hellenic Fleet, Rear Admiral Panagiotis Limperis HN and of the Commander of the U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa/U.S. 6th Fleet (CNE-CNA/C6F), Vice Admiral Lisa M. Franchetti USN.
The exercise conducted by the US Navy from Sunday 29th April to Friday 11th May 2018, in the wider area of the Cretan Sea and the Central Mediterranean, including activities at the facilities of NATO Maritime Interdiction Operational Training Centre (NMIOTC).
The aim of the exercise was the approach of South African countries and the upgrade of the co-operation between the Navies of North Africa, Southern Europe and America.
During the exercise, the participants practiced to respond to Maritime Security challenges and to Search and Rescue procedures.
The Hellenic Navy participated with the frigate HS PSARA and her organic helicopter (S70B, Aegean Hawk), diving teams and Staff Officers. Also, units of Algeria, USA, Spain, Italy, Canada, Libya, Malta, Morocco, Mauritania, the Netherlands, Turkey and Tunisia participated.