FS Var In Marmaris

A-608 FS Var in Marmaris. Photo: yeniasir.com

A-608 FS Var in Marmaris. Photo: yeniasir.com

French Durance class underway replenishment tanker A-608 FS Var arrived in Marmaris in the morning hours on 5 April 2014.

Although it was not disclosed how long the ship will stay in Marmaris, it is safe to assume that the port visit will take at least 3 days. It was reported that FS Var is going back to France after completing her deployment for NATO’s Active Endeavor in Eastern Mediterranean.

Cassard In Marmaris

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FS Cassard in exercise with USS George H.W. Bush.

The French frigate D-614 FS Cassard arrived in Marmaris for a port visit.

Before arriving in Marmaris, the French warship stationed in Eastern Mediterranean, conducted “PASSEX” exercise with the U.S. aircraft carrier USS George H. W. Bush.

Unlike her sister D-615 FS Jean Bart the main radar of FS Cassard has not been upgraded. She still has the original DRBJ 11B 3 D radar. This radar was replaced with a SMART-S Mk2 on FS Jean Bart.

Maltese Naval Forces

Being an island at the middle of the Mediterranean, the Maritime Squadron of Armed Forces of Malta has a wide range of duties, including coast guard, customs, marine police, fisheries protection and search and rescue.

Melita 1

Melita 1, CP800 Vittoria Melita class search and rescue launch

P02

P02, Boomeranger class RHIB

P21

P21, P21 class inshore patrol vessel

P23

P23, P21 class inshore patrol vessel

P24

P24, P21 class inshore patrol vessel

P32

P32, Bremse class patrol boat

P51 kopya

P51, Protector class patrol boat

P51

P51, Protector class patrol boat

P52

P52, Protector class patrol boat

P61

P61, Diciotti class offshore patrol vessel. P61 is the flagship of Maltese Maritime Squadron.

P61_1

P61, Diciotti class offshore patrol vessel

RHIB

A RHIP of the Maltese Police.

FS Surcouf In Marmaris

F-711 FS Surcouf arrives in Marmaris. Photo: haber7.com

F-711 FS Surcouf arrives in Marmaris. Photo: haber7.com

The French La Fayette class frigate F-711 FS Surcouf arrived in Marmaris, yesterday.
The ship will leave on Monday and resume her duties in the Eastern Mediterranean.

On a lighter note the arrival of the French ship was published by many Turkish media portals as

The French Navy frigate Scout F711, conducting NATO duties, came in the morning to Marmaris.

It seems to write the correct name of the ship was an unbearable burden for the Turkish journalist originating the story, and the editors of the other news portals using the story did not bother to checking the facts.

Bulgarian Frigate Drazki Returned Home

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Bulgarian frigate 41 BGS Drazki passing through Bosphorus on 5 November 2013. Photo: Ahmet Soufa Kayalı. Used with permission.

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Bulgarian frigate 41 BGS Drazki passing through Bosphorus on 5 November 2013. Photo: Ahmet Soufa Kayalı. Used with permission.

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Bulgarian frigate 41 BGS Drazki passing through Bosphorus on 5 November 2013. Photo: Ahmet Soufa Kayalı. Used with permission.

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Bulgarian frigate 41 BGS Drazki passing through Bosphorus on 5 November 2013. Photo: Ahmet Soufa Kayalı. Used with permission.

The Bulgarian Wielingen class frigate 41 BGS Drazki passed through Bosphorus on 5 November 2013 and returned to her home port Burgas, Bulgaria.

She took part in NATO operations in the Mediterranean. According to NATO she was part of the SNMG-2 task force for a period of time:
Standing NATO Maritime Group TWO (SNMG2) and Standing NATO Mine-Countermeasures Group TWO (SNMCMG2) met yesterday for a joint training opportunity at sea near Crete, Greece.

Both Groups have been operating in the Mediterranean in support of the counter-terrorism Operation ACTIVE ENDEAVOUR (OAE), demonstrating NATO’s resolve to help deter, defend, disrupt and protect against terrorism.

COMSNMG2 Rear Admiral Eugenio Diaz del Rio welcomed aboard his flagship COMSNMCMG2 Commander Matthias Seipel for a brief meeting, discussing ongoing NATO operations and observing the combined twelve ships from eight different countries operating together.

SNMG2 presently consisting of the frigates ESPS ALVARO DE BAZAN (Spain), FGS SACHSEN (Germany), TCG SALIHREIS (Turkey), ITS GRECALE (Italy), ROS REGINA MARIA (Romania), BGS DRAZKI (Bulgaria) and URS TERNOPIL (Ukraine).

SNMCMG2 consisting of the mine hunters FGS MOSEL and FGS ROTTWEIL (Germany), TCG ERDEMLI (Turkey), ITS CROTONE (Italy) and HMS PENZANCE (United Kingdom).

Well I do not believe that Drazki was part of the SNMG despite the NATO press release more likely that she took part in NATO Operation Active Endeavour, as previously done by Bulgarian warships.

Doğu Akdeniz 2013 Naval Exercise

Turkish Navy announced that the Doğu Akdeniz 2013 naval exercise will start on 4th November. The invitation only exercise will continue till 14 November 2013.

Besides ships, planes of Turkish Navy, Coast Guard and Air Force, SNMG-2 task force of NATO and one US Navy destroyer will also take part in the exercise which will be conducted in like its name implies in Eastern Mediterranean.

The purpose of the exercise is to develop mutual cooperation and to provide training opportunities to the participating forces on regional crisis intervention along a provided scenario.

5 naval helicopters, 1 maritime patrol plane, one underwater assault team and one naval WMD response team, planes from Turkish air force and NATO Maritime Security Center of Excellence will participate in the exercise along with the ships listed below:

Number Name Type Country
F-X TCG X Frigate Turkey
F-X TCG X Frigate Turkey
F-X TCG X Frigate Turkey
F-X TCG X Corvette Turkey
F-X TCG X Corvette Turkey
P-X TCG X Fast Attack Boat Turkey
P-X TCG X Fast Attack Boat Turkey
P-X TCG X Fast Attack Boat Turkey
P-X TCG X Fast Attack Boat Turkey
S-X TCG X Submarine Turkey
S-X TCG X Submarine Turkey
S-X TCG X Submarine Turkey
A-X TCG X Tanker Turkey
A-X TCG X Tanker Turkey
NL-X TCG X LST Turkey
P-X TCG X Patrol Boat Turkey
P-X TCG X Patrol Boat Turkey
F-101 ESPS Alvaro De Bazan Frigate Spain
F-246 TCG Salihreis Frigate Turkey
F-219 FGS Sachsen Frigate Germany
DDG-55 USS Stout Destroyer USA

Any additions and corrections are most welcome.

TCG Oruçreis In Toulon

F-245 TCG Oruçreis

F-245 TCG Oruçreis

NATO’s Maritime Capability Group 1 on Above Water Engagement conducted naval electronic warfare trials in Toulon, France between 30 September and 4 October 2013.

4 vessels and measuring/simulator systems from France, Germany, Italy, Norway, Sweden and Turkey took part. The MEKO 200 Track IIA class frigate F-245 TCG Oruçreis was the Turkish participant to these trials. 

 

The Participants Of Brilliant Mariner 2013

One of the NATO’s largest exercise Brilliant Mariner 2013 is continuing in the Mediterranean.

The exercise, which will end on 6 October 2013, will take place in the Tyrrhenian Sea between Sicily and Sardinia.

Over five thousand military and naval personnel from 12 NATO nations comprising Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany , Italy, Latvia, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States will participate in this major annual exercise.

25 warships, including one aircraft carrier, 12 frigates, one amphibious warfare ship, one auxiliary ship and 7 mines countermeasures vessels will be involved, alongside a wide variety of aircraft, submarines and embarked marines. Two submarines and a Maritime Patrol Aircraft will also take part.

I was able to compile the most of the participating ships with the help of Russian radio scanners:

Number Name Type Country
C-550 ITS Cavour Aircraft Carrier Italy
D-554 ITS Caio Duilio Destroyer Italy
D-561 ITS Francesco Mimbelli Destroyer Italy
F-571 ITS Grecale Frigate Italy
F-574 ITS Aliseo Frigate Italy
F-576 ITS Espero Frigate Italy
F-557 ITS Fenice Corvette Italy
P-490 ITS Comandante Cigala Fulgosi OPV Italy
P-493 ITS Comandante Foscari OPV Italy
L-9893 ITS San Marco LPD Italy
A-5327 ITS Stromboli Tanker Italy
F-103 ESPS Blas De Lezo Frigate Spain
F-246 TCG Salihreis Frigate Turkey
F-219 FGS Sachsen Frigate Germany
F-218 FGS Meclenburg- Vorpommern Frigate Germany
S-522 ITS Salvatore Pelosi Submarine Italy
S-358 TCG Çanakkale Submarine Turkey
A-512 FGS Mosel Tender Germany
M-1061 FGS Rottweil Mine hunter Germany
M-264 TCG Erdemli Mine hunter Turkey
5558 ITS Crotone Mine hunter Italy
5552 ITS Milazzo Mine hunter Italy

Any additions and corrections are most welcome.

F-42 Constituição In Istanbul

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The Brazilian Niteroi class frigate F-42 Constituição in Istanbul. Photo: Kerim Bozkurt. Used with permission.

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The Brazilian Niteroi class frigate F-42 Constituição in Istanbul. Photo: Kerim Bozkurt. Used with permission.

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The Brazilian Niteroi class frigate F-42 Constituição in Istanbul. Photo: Kerim Bozkurt. Used with permission.

After finishing her visit to Sevastopol, Ukraine, the Brazilian frigate F-42 Constituição, arrived in Istanbul 3 days ago.

The Niteroi class frigate F-42 Constituição took part as the Brazilian participant to UNIFIL. She was relived by the frigate F-45 Unitao by the same class in July.

 

SNMG-2 Press Conference On Board SPS Blas De Lezo

From left to right: Commander Levent Bingöl , Rear Admiral Eugenio Diaz Del Rio, Commander Fernando Alvarez Blanco

On 24 July 2013 late afternoon NATO’s Standing Maritime Group 2 (SNMG-2) arrived in Istanbul.

The group was in the Black Sea since 5 July and visited Bulgaria, and Ukraine and conducted training with Bulgarian and Romanian naval units.

Currently, SNMG-2 consists of the Spanish frigate F-103 SPS Blas De Lezo and Turkish frigate F-246 TCG Salihreis

I was invited to the press conference on board of SPS Blas De Lezo on 25 July 2013. It was my third visit of a Spanish warship but my first press conference so it was quite an interesting event.

Rear Admiral Eugenio Diaz Del Rio is the current commander of the Maritime Group 2, for a period of a year starting June 15th 2013.
He, with the commander of the SPS Blas De Lezo Commander Fernando Alvarez Blanco and the commander of TCG Salihreis Commander Levent Bingöl answered the question of the press.

Real Admiral Diaz Del Rio explained that there will two different stages during his command. In the first stage SNMG-2 will remain mainly in the Mediterranean and in the Black Sea and will support NATO’s Operation Active Endevour and take part in naval exercises Doğu Akdeniz organized by Turkish Navy, Briliant Mariner/Mare Aperto by Italy or Naias by Greece.

In the second stage in 2014 will relived SNMG-1 in the Gulf of Aden and will take the responsibly of the NATO’s anti-piracy operation Ocean Shield for the first 6 months.

He also told that the current composition of SNMG is going to change in late August as more warships will join the group.

Upon my question how he would elaborate this the Black Sea cruise of the SNMG-2 he told that being in the Black sea was interesting as a member of the Spanish Navy he did not had many opportunities to be there. The training of SNMG-2 with the Bulgarian and Romanian naval units was in his opinion very good and helped these NATO navies in gaining the experiences other older NATO navies already have.

Real Admiral Diaz Del Rio compared this force to the fire fighters and said “We must always be ready for any kind of situation emerging in our area. We do not have luxury of saying we need 24 hours to be ready”

He also praised the support of Turkish Navy. SNMG-2 was refueled by Turkish oiler 3 times when it was in the Black Sea. Real Admiral Diaz Del Rio informed that during his tour as Staff Operations Officer at NATO’S Standing Naval Force in the Mediterranean (STANAVFORMED) in 2000 he was stationed on board of a Turkish ship and had a very good working relations with Turkish Navy.

The admiral answered my question whether a plan at NATO level or at national level for Spain existed to position AEGIS platforms such as the frigate Blas De Lezo on the Black Sea, to support NATO initiative to provide a BMD for Europe by saying that NATO was to provide command and control for the BMD system components and every participating nation was going to provide their equipment accordingly.

Upon a question how it feels to have an admiral and his staff on board the commander of the SPS Blas De Lezo Commander Fernando Alvarez Blanco said that Real Admiral Diaz Del Rio, was his boss in their previous tenure and they have been working together for a long time.

Commander Blanco also told that Turkish delegations have visited the frigate and they have been extensively briefed about the working of the AEGIS system. He also told us that the AEGIS system was working well in coastal/littoral Sea such as the Mediterranean or the Black Sea especially if you have a previous knowledge of the area and the expected threads.

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