The Argentine and Brazilian navies strengthened interoperability with combined exercises Passex and Fraterno XXXVI. Service members carried out various maneuvers on the high seas, including navigation in low visibility, transit under air, and surface threat and submarine operations. Participants also visited strategic logistics ports, such as Mar del Plata in Argentina and Itajaí in Brazil.
Exercise Passex took place in Argentine jurisdictional waters, while Fraterno XXXVI was held in Brazilian waters. “Exercise Passex and Exercise Fraterno are held alternately in each of the two countries and their adjacent waters, and consist of war games and exercises at sea,” the Argentine Ministry of Defense said.
“Fundamentally, [Passex and Fraterno] contribute to optimizing the degree of interoperability between both navies, through the exchange of information based on the command and control systems of naval surface assets, submarines, aircraft, and the Marine Corps,” the Argentine Defense Ministry said of the exercises held in late August.
“Holding this exercise [Fraterno] again, after six years, is proof of the will to deepen fraternity, interoperability, and that energy that arises between both countries,” Argentina’s Defense Minister Jorge Taiana, said during the launch of the exercises at Mar del Plata Naval Base.
Argentine authorities also met with the Brazilian Ambassador Julio Glinternick Bitelli to discuss bilateral defense relations, Taiana said via X.
During Fraterno, service members carried out air operations, surface fire, anti-aircraft fire, and tactical maneuvers. “The exchange of knowledge and experience strengthened the training of the military personnel involved, contributing to more effectively promoting maritime security in the region and stability on the continent,” the Brazilian Navy News Agency told Diálogo.
Service members also participated in “leapfrog” maneuvering drills between ships, in which one sails at a constant course and speed and the other approaches, and a light-line transfer, to pass items from one ship to the other using a cable.
Brazil participated with the frigates Independência and União, as well as the submarine Tikuna. “Aerial participation included an AH-11B Wild Lynx helicopter and a UH-12 Esquilo,” news site Defesa em Foco reported.
For its part, Argentina took the ARA Sarandí destroyer and the Contraalmirante Cordero ocean patrol boat, the Argentine Navy said.
Combined Naval Force
According to the Argentine Defense Ministry, Fraterno was a pioneer in bringing Argentina and Brazil closer together through their navies. The first edition was held in 1978 and opened the way to consolidating a growing degree of interoperability.
“In the training, a Combined Naval Force is formed to conduct and execute operations in an area where multiple threats occur: submarine, air, and surface,” the Argentine Defense Ministry said in a statement. “Every year, the crews of both navies take advantage of these meetings to exchange professional opinions and foster camaraderie.”