USS SWEDEN, ANGELUS BLOCK — Admiral Johannes Ekker, commanding officer of the Fleet Training & Joint Operation Task Force, has launched a training exercise involving over fifty-five vessels and nearly nine thousand crew-members.
Ekker declared that a major exercise, of a size not seen since the end of the Dominion War almost thirty years ago, will be held near and in the Angelus Block. The Block, made up of a group of systems in a naturally hazardous area of space, contains nebulae, hostile planetoids and frequently beset by severe ionic storms and solar flares.
They specifically chose the area to introduce unfamiliar fleet officers to a new zone of Federation influence. The Angelus Block is a recent addition to the outer frontier of Federation controlled space and represents fresh challenges for security, logistics and Fleet operations.
To justify these extreme preparations, Ekker has invited press observers aboard his flagship, the USS Sweden, to see what he describes as “vital readiness exercises” first hand.
“While I agree with many that a simulation can teach vital skills, nothing beats real-life experience,” Ekker commented to the assembled observers. “There are certain intangible aspects of a feeling, idea or action that you can not simulate in an artificial environment. It is amid the chaos of proper action that we truly learn lifesaving lessons.”
This exercise, code-named Transcendent Grasp, will focus on anti-piracy interdiction, deep space search and rescue procedure, ship to ship combat and fleet manoeuvres.
Commercial traffic is temporarily suspended in and around the operational area within the Angelus Block unless a valid Certificate 5 B is provided.
Local trade unions have already filed a protest with Starfleet Operations for what they call a ‘gross disruption to commerce with dubious practical aims. The trade union representative could not be reached for comment by press time. The Federation Commercial Institute, however, commented on the ease of obtaining a Certificate 5 B.
“A certificate 5 B can be received in less than two days. It is only a little paperwork as long as the cargo is off sufficient desirability and requirement. We are talking, water, food, medicine and supplies of similar importance to the local populations.”