The French Navy (Marine Natiionale) Carrier Strike Group (CSG) set sail again yesterday after a few days of port call in Cyprus. Clemenceau22 continues, but the mission evolves to adapt to the current geopolitical situation as part of air patrols on the Alliance’s eastern flank in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. As part of the Clemenceau 22 mission, the French CSG will also conduct “tri carrier operations” with the Italian Navy (Marina Militare)’s Cavour CSG and the U.S. Navy’s Truman CSG. The main purpose is to maintain interoperability between allied navies, and train with new assets such as Italian F-35Bs, and American E-2D Advanced Hawkeye aircraft.
The diversity of the CSG’s naval and air assets, its ability to last at sea, and its freedom of action, allow France and its allies to have at their disposal a flexible instrument of power, capable of adapting very quickly. The detection capabilities of the E2-C Hawkeye will notably enable the carrier strike group to assess the surface situation at the European maritime borders, especially in the Black Sea. Deployed yesterday in CJTFOIR to fight against Daech, engaged today for the benefit of the reassurance of our NATO partners on the eastern flank of Europe, the carrier strike group continues to operate for the protection of France and the European continent.
The aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle is going on another mission from February to April 2022. This will be her 14th mission. Demonstrating its interoperability with allied navies, the Carrier Strike Group (CSG) will integrate several foreign vessels during its mission. France is deploying its carrier strike group in Task Force 473 (TF 473) formed around the aircraft carrier ‘Charles de Gaulle’, which will be engaged until April 2022 in the Mediterranean as part of the CLEMENCEAU 22 mission. The CSG will contribute 3 Combat Air Patrols (CAP) of two Rafale M each, per day. The Rafale M will be refueled by NATO tankers present in the area.
Charles de Gaulle is the flagship of the French Navy. The ship, commissioned in 2001, is the tenth French aircraft carrier, first French nuclear-powered surface vessel, as well as only nuclear-powered carrier completed outside of the United States Navy. She is named after French statesman and general Charles de Gaulle. The ship carries a complement of Dassault Rafale M and E-2C Hawkeye aircraft, AS365F Dauphin Pedro, EC725 Caracal, and AS532 Cougar helicopters for combat search and rescue, as well as modern electronics and Aster missiles. As of July 2021, Charles de Gaulle is the only non-American carrier vessel that has a catapult launch system, which has allowed for the operation of F/A-18E/F Super Hornets and C-2 Greyhounds of the US Navy.
#Clemenceau22 | Contribution au renforcement de la posture défensive et dissuasive du flanc Est de l’#Europe et de l’#OTAN. 1ère mission pour les Rafale @MarineNationale et les Hawkeye du @French_CSG. #SolidaritéStratégique pic.twitter.com/9yhmPrE6I7
— Armée française – Opérations militaires (@EtatMajorFR) March 5, 2022