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The Joint Expeditionary Force Activity Nordic Warden

This week, the Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF) has begun a month-long series of protective military activities which sees multiple Maritime and Air units contributing to the security of Critical Undersea Infrastructure across Northern Europe. This JEF Response Option activity, called NORDIC WARDEN, follows the similar deployment by the JEF in December 2023 – the first of its kind, following a JEF Leaders’ announcement in October. 

Ships, aircraft, and personnel from JEF Participant Nations will operate in numerous areas from the North Atlantic Ocean through to the Baltic Sea, with activity coordinated by the JEF from Northwood Headquarters, UK. Iceland contributes to the activity with civilian information officers from the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and the Icelandic Coast Guard, who will coordinate communications activities from the JEF Headquarters.

Critical Undersea Infrastructure is essential for economic activity between the highly interconnected nations across northern Europe and any disruption to it, whether malign or accidental, would have a major effect on the daily lives of their populations. NORDIC WARDEN activities bring together capabilities from all ten JEF nations to monitor shipping activity near important undersea energy and communications routes, and to coordinate the detection and interdiction of any unusual or suspicious activity in their vicinity. 

NORDIC WARDEN builds on the JEF’s capability to cohere multiple activity streams between a number of nations simultaneously across both time and space. This activity demonstrates how the JEF framework can combine the strengths of each nation to provide a unified capability exemplifying JEF’s role as a key contributor to regional security, and more importantly emphasises how the JEF works alongside NATO as the region’s ultimate security guarantor.

JEF is a group of like-minded Northern European countries cooperating on security and defence with a focus on the Arctic, the North Atlantic and the Baltic Sea Region. The JEF combines the strengths of ten nations by planning, training, and operating together continuously, and is intended to support other multinational defence cooperation, including NATO. The participating countries also hold regular and effective security political consultations.



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