by Vincent Groizeleau. French version (Comment Naval Group s’organise pour assurer la disponibilité de la flotte française ?) published online on 6 April 2020. Translated and adapted by Steve Dyson.
While Naval Group design and support teams work from home, surface combatant and submarine shipbuilding at Lorient and Cherbourg respectively is at a virtual standstill due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The situation is, however, different at the Brest and Toulon facilities responsible primarily for maintaining the French fleet. To safeguard its personnel and resources, the Navy has down-scaled operations to its main missions. These include continuous-at-sea nuclear deterrence, surveillance and security of France’s maritime approaches, sea search & rescue, and the maintenance of a French naval presence in strategic areas, notably the eastern Mediterranean and the Persian Gulf, where Paris wishes to independently monitor the regional situation. The Navy is also contributing to operation Résilience to provide nationwide support for the fight against the pandemic. More specifically, Navy aircraft have helped to move Covid-19 patients from over-stretched hospitals to others that still had beds available. PHA-type landing helicopter docks Mistral and Dixmude have been deployed to Mayotte in …
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