A large fleet of warships from NATO’s Response Force is conducting exercises across the Mediterranean.
NATO said in a statement that the naval exercise, Brilliant Mariner, which is taking place off the coast of Italy, is part of an annual training program to test the maritime portion of the NATO Response Force.
"The exercise is designed to challenge NATO navies with a wide range of scenarios from humanitarian crisis response to combat operations and is not related to, or directed at, any specific country," the statement said.
Several American and French warships are absent from the ongoing drill in south Italy as they remain close to the Syrian coast, putting pressure on the Syrian regime to implement a deal to give up its chemical weapons.
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