This was a German naval undertaking to move the heavy cruiser (ex-pocket battleship) Lützow from Swinemünde on Germany’s Baltic Sea coast to Kristiansand on the coast of German-occupied Norway (15/20 May 1942).
For this operation Lützow was escorted by the destroyers Richard Beitzen, Hans Lody, Z 27 and Z 29 and the escort F 1. To provide greater protection, on 17/18 May the destroyers laid a defensive minefield west of the Skagerrak. The Allies attempted to intervene with submarines, but the Free French Minerve and British Unbending reached the area too late to effect an interception.
Between 18 and 20 May Lützow moved with the four destroyers and the torpedo boat T 15 farther to the north, and thus closer to the areas through which the Allied Arctic convoys steamed, from Kristiansand to Trondheim.