13 September 2013 Ms Claudia Gonnelli, PAO Intern - Nato
NATO's Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (SACT), French Air Force General Jean-Paul Paloméros visited Portugal, September 11th-12th, to emphasise the importance of aligning Allied Command Transformation's (ACT) and Portugal’s transformational efforts.
The visit included an office call with Portugal's Minister of Defence, Dr. José Pedro Aguiar Branco and with the Portuguese Chief of Defence, Air Force General Luis Araújo.
After receiving a briefing on the Portuguese Armed Forces, discussions between General Paloméros and the Portuguese officials focussed on ‘Smart Defence’ and the ‘Connected Forces Initiative’ (CFI). A ‘high visibility exercise’ that Portugal will host – in conjunction with Spain and Italy – in 2015 was also touched upon.
SACT thanked the Portuguese authorities for their cooperation in the relocation of Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO (STRIKFORNATO) from Naples Italy to Oeiras, Portugal. STRIKFORNATO’s main mission is to provide a rapidly deployable Joint but predominantly Maritime headquarters to plan, command and control maritime operations across the full spectrum of ‘Alliance Fundamental Security Tasks’, including maritime ‘Expanded Task Force’ operations and maritime-heavy ‘Smaller Joint Operations’ within the Euro-Atlantic region or at what is called strategic reach. By signing a Memorandum of Understanding in 2012, Portugal became the 11th member nation joining STRIKFORNATO.
The future relocation of the ‘NATO Communications and Information Systems School’ (NCISS) from Latina, Italy, to Oeiras, Portugal, was also discussed. The School’s primary mission is to provide cost-effective, highly developed formal training to personnel (military and civilian) from NATO as well as Non-NATO Nations for efficient operation and maintenance of NATO Communication and Information Systems (CIS).
Portugal is one of NATO’s founding members and hosts one of Allied Command Transformation (ACT)’s command elements: the Joint Analysis and Lessons Learned Centre (JALLC), in Monsanto. The JALLC acts as the focal point in NATO for collection of lesson learned and for analysis of operations, exercises and training.
During his visit, General Paloméros also paid tribute to Portuguese soldiers, by laying a wreath at the Memorial to Portuguese Veterans at Belem, Lisbon, Portugal.