#DarkoVuković #Nato #MontenegroNavy
Montenegro’s Navy is ready to respond to challenges Montenegro faces in joining NATO. Captain of a battleship Darko Vuković claims that “they are already working with partners on equal basis”.
During last year, Port Bar has become an certain home for Alliance’s ships, because the conditions offered by the “Southern doors of the Adriatic” do not fall behind those in much bigger and more developed countries.
“Port Bar has extraordinary capacities, and we successfully welcomed ships of USA Navy, that are characteristic for their length of even 200 meters. We have an oil terminal at our disposal, that is often used by the ships. There is a segment that needs improvement and we are focused on it; that is matter of safety and security of those ships. The Navy, in cooperation with other state agencies, especially Port Bar, is permanently working on improving standards, because warships demand a special security treatment”, Vuković said.
The ships must be secured from both land and the sea, and of course, from USA.
“We have regular visits from countries in the region. We welcomed ships from Italy, Greece, Turkey, Spain and France. In 2014, after a break of ten years, we had a visit from United Kingdom. Our regular guests are countries of east Adriatic – Slovenia, Croatia and Albania”, Vuković added.
According to him, Port Bar is mostly visited by ships from a wider region of Mediterranean, and of course, United States of America.
One of Navy’s priorities is development of its interoperability in cooperation with allies and partners. This entails, primarily, the compliance and compatibility of equipment.
“We are developing our capacities and we have reached a level that allows us to say today that we are compatible in performance of joint activities, especially in the field of communication and information technologies, where we can exchange information without interruptions. Interoperability is important also in the field of training, and we have been implementing those standards for a decade already. We manage the system of planning, preparation, leading and commanding water exercises, with special accent on commaning sea vehicles that have a multi-national character”, Vuković explained.
When asked what is the optimal number and specification of ships for surveillance and defence of our coast according to NATO standards, Vuković said that the last study done by Navy’s command from December 2015, gives a clear answer.
“We plan to have two patrol ships in medium length of 50 to 60 meters, with the most of 500 tons of displacement, that will be able to perform tasks outside of Montenegro’s territorial sea and to answer integration processes, whether they are specific tasks in the zone of southern Adriatic, or within missions and operations in the wider area. We planned to acquire three patrol boats of 15 meters in length, intended for fast reactions in cases when it is needed, and special mission that entail chasing and stopping ships that are in violations. These boats would be used to secure coastal infrastructure, protection and security of our own, and ships of the allies that are in visit. They would also be used to transfer people in search and saving actions, medicinal evacuations, coastal transport.. Two big and three smaller ships are optimal in accordance with our resources”, he underlined.
Vuković thinks that Montenegro joining NATO can only be beneficial.
“When asked by colleagues from other countries whether I think Montenegro will join NATO, my answer was – seeing that we are sitting at the same table, doing the same work – we are already in NATO. It only needs to be official now”, Vuković concluded.
Source: Cafe Del Montenegro