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The guided-missile destroyer USS Farragut steams behind the guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy during a live-fire exercise Sept. 25, 2019, in the Artic Ocean.

The guided-missile destroyer USS Farragut steams behind the guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy during a live-fire exercise Sept. 25, 2019, in the Artic Ocean. (Michael H. Lehman/U.S. Navy)

The guided-missile destroyer USS Farragut steams behind the guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy during a live-fire exercise Sept. 25, 2019, in the Artic Ocean.

The guided-missile destroyer USS Farragut steams behind the guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy during a live-fire exercise Sept. 25, 2019, in the Artic Ocean. (Michael H. Lehman/U.S. Navy)

Gunner's Mate 2nd Class Tyler Shiplet mans a .50-caliber machine gun as the  guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen transits the Strait of Gibraltar Sept. 27, 2019.

Gunner's Mate 2nd Class Tyler Shiplet mans a .50-caliber machine gun as the guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen transits the Strait of Gibraltar Sept. 27, 2019. (Tamara Vaughn/U.S. Navy)

The guided-missile destroyer USS Forrest Sherman, front, and the guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy transit the Atlantic Ocean, Sept. 16, 2019. The ships were operating in the Atlantic as part of a Surface Action Group in support of naval operations to maintain maritime stability and security.

The guided-missile destroyer USS Forrest Sherman, front, and the guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy transit the Atlantic Ocean, Sept. 16, 2019. The ships were operating in the Atlantic as part of a Surface Action Group in support of naval operations to maintain maritime stability and security. (Michael H. Lehman/U.S. Navy)

The guided-missile destroyers USS Farragut, front, and USS Lassen transit the Atlantic Ocean, Sept. 16, 2019.

The guided-missile destroyers USS Farragut, front, and USS Lassen transit the Atlantic Ocean, Sept. 16, 2019. (Michael H. Lehman/U.S. Navy)

The guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen arrives in Souda Bay, Greece for a scheduled port visit, Oct. 1, 2019.

The guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen arrives in Souda Bay, Greece for a scheduled port visit, Oct. 1, 2019. (Tamara Vaughn/U.S. Navy)

Seaman Recruit Bryan Rosado stands the starboard bridge wing lookout watch as the guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy approaches Souda Bay, Greece for a scheduled port visit Oct. 6, 2019.

Seaman Recruit Bryan Rosado stands the starboard bridge wing lookout watch as the guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy approaches Souda Bay, Greece for a scheduled port visit Oct. 6, 2019. (Michael H. Lehman/U.S. Navy)

A group of warships is conducting tactical drills and security operations in the Mediterranean as part of the first coordinated deployment between the 2nd and 6th fleets.

The two fleets working together “contributes to … our naval forces’ ability to address challenges and threats to safety and security,” Adm. James Foggo, commander of Naval Forces Europe and Africa, said in a statement.

This is the first deployment for the 2nd Fleet since it reached operational capacity in May. The fleet sailed without the aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman, which remained in port to undergo repairs for an electrical malfunction.

A Surface Action Group comprising the destroyers USS Lassen and USS Farragut left Norfolk last month and were joined en route to European waters by the destroyer USS Forrest Sherman and the cruiser USS Normandy. A SAG typically is a temporary stand-in for a carrier strike group.

The 2nd Fleet was restored last year as a scaled-down version of the Cold War-era naval force that was mothballed in 2011 because of budget cuts. One of the fleet’s primary missions is to bolster the U.S. presence in the North Atlantic, where Russia is deploying more submarines.

Command of the SAG shifted to 6th Fleet on Sept. 27 after completing operations in the Arctic near Iceland. Passing control of warships at agreed-upon locations, rather than at set boundaries, creates more flexibility and makes it harder for adversaries to predict, Navy officials have said.

wyland.scott@stripes.com Twitter: @wylandstripes


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