Turkish And Chinese Naval Forces Are Doing Reciprocal Port Visits

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F-495 TCG Gediz arrives at naval port Qingdao, east China’s Shandong Province, for a 3-day visit. Photo: Xinhua/Li Qian

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The Chinese Jiangkai II (Type 054A) class frigate 550 Weifang in Istanbul.

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The Chinese Jiangkai II (Type 054A) class frigate 547 Linyi in Istanbul.

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The Fuchi class replenishment tanker Weishan Hu 887 in Istanbul.

 

I think we are witnessing a rare moment in naval diplomacy. Turkish and Chinese Naval Forces are conducting reciprocal port visits.

Turkish Gabya class frigate F-495 TCG Gediz arrived at a naval port in Qingdao, east China’s Shandong Province, on May 22, 2015 for a 3-day visit. As reported earlier she is on an a commemorative deployment to honor the sunken Ottoman sail frigate Ertuğrul in Japan. Therefore TCG Gediz is visiting the same ports Ertuğrul visited 125 years ago.

While TCG Gediz is in China, 3 PLAN warships, 550 Weifang, 547 Linyi and 887 Weishan Hu arrived today in Istanbul for a port visit. The ships have passed through the Çanakkale Strait yesterday morning and arrived in Istanbul this morning. The duration of the port visit was not disclosed.

The Chinese do not talk much about the visit of the Turkish warship. And while the Turkish ship will be open to public visits, the Chinese ships in Istanbul are not open to visit, thought the Chinese allowed visitors on board, while they were in Russia earlier this month.

This double standard makes me, a very sad man.

Second Generation Milgem Design Revealed

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A conceptual drawing of Milgem-G class. Original photo by Arda Mevlütoğu. Enhancements by me.

 

During the IDEF 2015 12th International Defense Industry Fair, Turkish Navy shared the first conceptual drawing of the second generation of Milgem ships which are also called as Milgem-G

So, what do we see here?

Nothing unorthodox or groundbreaking or very experimental. From the outside the ship is an enlarged Milgem. The inside changes can only be speculated at this moment.

The hull is basically the same as the existing Milgem class ships. It is longer and heavier due to the increased weapon load and other design changes, but there appears no important changes either on the hull or on the superstructure.

The main gun is a 76mm with a stealth cupola. There is 16 canister VLS just behind the gun. As Turkish Navy uses Mk41 VLS system it is safe to say that the same system will be used in Milgem-G class. These canister will be loaded with ESSM missiles.

The forms of the bridge and the main mast is almost identical to the existing Milgem class only slightly enlarge. There will be a Smart-S Mk2 radar and ARES-2 ESM suit on the mast.

There are 16 anti ship missiles in the area between the main mast and the funnel. This is the twice the usual load of the existing anti ship missiles normally carried on Turkish warships. So not all the missiles will be Harpoon otherwise will be too expensive to procure and maintain 16 anti ship missiles.

The design of Milgem-G from the funnel till the end of the ship is identical to the Milgem. The only major difference is the close in weapon system. While the Milgem has the RAM anti-air missiles the Milgem-G has a Phalanx gun. The reason for this change might be the high cost of the RAM missile system compared to MK-15 Phalanx.

There are two remotely controlled guns on the both sides of the funnel. The details are sketchy but I expect the chaff, flare launchers and torpedo counter measure launchers to be on their existent places. There is no need to change their places.

The above mentioned are the external differences between the two generation of Milgem ships. The internal changes are very hard to tell at this time. But nevertheless I think one might safely say that the combat management system of the second generation will be an improved version of the first generation.

Once the design is completed and cast, the Under-secretariat for Defence Industries, will issue a request for information from Turkish shipyards. This will mark the start of the construction program of the second class of the Milgem ships.

TCG Gediz In Hong Kong

When PLAN ships were passing through the Turkish Straits, a Turkish frigate was visiting China to return the favor.

TCG Gediz arrived in Hong Kong on 15 May and will stay there till 18 May. The visit of a Turkish warship to a Chinese port is equally rare as Chinese warships passing through the Turkish Straits.

The Turkish navy is paying a rare visit to Hong Kong and mainland waters this week, in a four-day trip that analysts describe as a shrewd move by the European nation to show its traditional allegiance to the West, but also its desire to build ties in Asia, particularly with China.

Last night, Turkey’s top diplomat in Hong Kong, Haldun Tekneci, hosted a reception aboard the frigate TCG Gediz, which docked on Friday in the country’s first naval visit for four years.

“We are super happy and we are so proud to see this warship because it has travelled so far,” he said, adding that the visit was a sign of growing relations with China and the East Asia region.

There was also a meeting at the People’s Liberation Army’s Hong Kong garrison – a courtesy call, Tekneci said – before they head to Qingdao , Shandong , tomorrow.

The TCG Gediz is making Asia the focus of a 122-day tour that started on April 1, taking in 14 nations with 18 stops in the region.

The China stops come at a sensitive time as Turkey’s planned purchase of a long-range missile defence system is still in limbo. It angered fellow Nato members over a 2013 deal to buy from a Chinese firm and has since agreed to look at versions offered by other countries while putting the Chinese deal on hold.

Nevertheless, Ankara’s relations with Beijing have grown significantly in recent years. In 2012, then vice-president Xi Jinping travelled to Turkey, resulting in deals worth US$4.3 billion across industries including finance, renewable energy and mining.

TCG Gediz in Port Klang

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TCG Gediz arrives at Port Klang in Maleysia. Photo: Dzirhan Mahadir. Used with permission.

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TCG Gediz at Port Klang in Maleysia. Photo: Dzirhan Mahadir. Used with permission.

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TCG Gediz in Port Klang in Maleysia. Photo: Dzirhan Mahadir. Used with permission.

Turkish frigate TCG Gediz arrived in Port Klang in Malaysia on 3 May 2015. She will continue to her journey on 5 May 2015.

The frigate is on a commemorative cruise replicating the route of the ill fated deployment of the Ottoman frigate Ertuğrul.

Naval Parade To Commemorate The Gallipoli Wars

On 24 April 2015, to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of Çanakkale Wars, a naval parade was held under the command of Turkish Navy Northern Task Group Commander Rear Admiral Ali Murat Dede.

The formation led by Turkish frigate TCG Salihreis was made up from the following ships from 5 different nations:

Position Number Name Country Type
1 F-246 TCG Salihreis Turkey Frigate
2 150 HMAS Anzac Australia Frigate
3 F-241 TCG Turgutreis Turkey Frigate
4 D-614 FS Cassard France Destroyer
5 F-242 TCG Fatih Turkey Frigate
6 F-77 HMNZS Te Kaha New Zealand Frigate
7 F-240 TCG Yavuz Turkey Frigate
8 L-15 HMS Bulwark Great Britain Assault Ship
9 F-511 TCG Heybeliada Turkey Corvette
10 SG-702 TCSG Güven Turkey OPV
11 SG-703 TCSG Umut Turkey OPV

To commemorate the 100th anniversary of Gallipoli Land Wars, 4 different ceremonies were held. The first ceremony was organised by Turkish Republic at the Turkish War Memorial on 24 April 2015. On the same day following these Turkish ceremony one ceremony at the British War Cemetery and one in French Cemetery are held simultaneously by their respective nations.

The last and, one of the major commemoration ceremonies was the Dawn Service at the Anzac Cove on 25 April 2015. More than ten thousand Australians and New Zealanders attended this special event.

The naval parade was organized for the commemorations at Turkish War Memorial and for the Anzac Dawn Service. The following photos are from the first event.

The parade of the warships was followed by an impressive show of Turkish Stars the aerobatic demonstration team of the Turkish Air Force. Click here for the photos.

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For the photos of the rehearsal click here.

Rehearsal For The Commemoration Parade

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On 23 April 2015, 11 warships from 5 different nations gathered in Çanakkale to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of Çanakkale Wars.

Two of them F-77 HMNZS Te Kaha and 150 HMAS Anzac arrived after a very long journey. The New Zealand frigate Te Kaha left her home port in 16 February and The Australian Frigate Anzac on 15 March 2015.
In addition to Australian and New Zealand frigates the British assault ship HMS Bulwark and the french destroyer FS Cassard ware also present. From Turkish Navy TCG Salihreis, TCG Yavuz, TCG Turgutreis, TCG Fatih TCG Heybeliada took part in the commemorations. And Turkish Coast Guard participated with the offshore patrol vessels TCSG Güven and TCSG Umut.

The above photos are taken on 23 April 2015 as the ship sailed southbound on Dardanelles for a rehearsal.

For the photos from the international sail past click here.

Deniz Yıldızı 2015 Exercise Completed

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F-502 TCG Bandırma returning from Deniz Yıldızı 2015 exercise in Black Sea. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

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Large landing ship NL-125 TCG Osmangazi making a southbound passage (returning from Deniz Yıldızı 2015 exercise!?) through Bosphorus. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

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F-491 TCG Gemlik returning from Deniz Yıldızı 2015 exercise in Black Sea. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

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Tanker A-573 Binbaşı Sadettin Gürcan returning from Deniz Yıldızı 2015 exercise in Black Sea. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

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F-500 TCG Bozcaada returning from Deniz Yıldızı 2015 exercise in Black Sea. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

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The oldest vessel in commission in Turkish Navy, A-578 TCG Gazal returning from the Deniz Yıldızı 2015 exercise.

The Deniz Yıldızı 2015 exercise ended on 16 April 2015 and the participants returned to their home ports.

According to the Turkish Navy website following units took part 6 frigates, 3 corvettes, 5 fast attack craft, 2 submarines, 7 auxiliaries, 2 patrol boats, 3 maritime surveillance planes, 7 helicopters.

I was able to identify 18 warships of out indicated 23. Here is the list:

Number Name Type
A572 TCG Yüzbaşı İhsan Tolunay Tanker
A573 TCG Binbaşı Sadettin Gürcan Tanker
A587 TCG Gazal Tug
A595 TCG Yarbay Kudret Güngör Tanker
AXXX Auxiliary
F240 TCG Yavuz Frigate
F241 TCG Turgutreis Frigate
F243 TCG Yıldırım Frigate
F245 TCG Oruçreis Frigate
F246 TCG Salihreis Frigate
F493 TCG Gelibolu Frigate
F500 TCG Bozcada Corvette
F502 TCG Bandırma Corvette
F511 TCG Heybeliada Corvette
P12XX Patrol Boat
P12XX Patrol Boat
P330 TCG Kılıç Fast attack craft
P332 TCG Mızrak Fast attack craft
P335 TCG İmbat Fast attack craft
P336 TCG Zıpkın Fast attack craft
P337 TCG Atak Fast attack craft
SXXX Submarine
SXXX Submarine

Click here for the photos of the frigates and fast attack craft participating in the exercise.

Joint Warrior 2015-1 Naval Component

 

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Monsieur Louis, Martin-Vézian from Contemporary Issues & Geography (CIGeography) prepare this wonderful picture where you can visualize easily all nations and all warships taking part in Joint Warrior 2015-1 exercise.

According to media sources there are 55 warships taking part in Joint Warrior 2015. The below list has 55 of them.

 

Thanks to:

Sjoforsvaret, for reminding me about HNOMS Thor Heyerdahl,

Herr Thomas Wiegold, for information on Germany Navy,

Mister Nils K Haugen for correcting the name of HNOMS Skjold.

Any further corrections and additions are always welcome.

Number Name Type Nationality
F930 BNS Leopold I Frigate Belgium
M921 BNS Lobelia Mine hunter Belgium
337 HMCS Frederıcton Frigate Canada
F357 HDMS Thetis Frigate Denmark
F362 HDMS Peter Willemoes Frigate Denmark
F363 HDMS Niels Juel Frigate Denmark
L16 HDMS Absalon Frigate Denmark
A630 FS Marne Auxiliary France
D 644 FS Primauguet Destroyer France
M642 FS Cassiopee Mine hunter France
A1442 FGS Spessart Auxiliary Germany
A514 FGS Werra Auxiliary Germany
A516 FGS Donau Auxiliary Germany
M614 FS Styx Mine hunter France
M1093 FGS Auerbach Mine hunter Germany
P6122 FGS Puma Fast Attack Craft Germany
P6123 FGS Hermerlin Fast Attack Craft Germany
P6125 FGS Zobel Fast Attack Craft Germany
P6126 FGS Frettchen Fast Attack Craft Germany
P6129 FGS Wiesel Fast Attack Craft Germany
P6130 FGS Hyäne Fast Attack Craft Germany
F575 ITS Euro Frigate Italy
F802 HNLMS De Zeven Provinciën Frigate Netherlands
M1063 FGS Bad Bevensen Mine hunter Germany
M857 HNLMS Makkum Mine hunter Netherlands
P843 HNLMS Groningen Patrol Netherlands
S802 HNLMS Walrus Submarine Netherlands
A535 HNOMS Valkyrien Auxiliary Norway
F314 HNOMS Thor Heyerdahl Frigate Norway
M864 HNLMS Willemstad Mine hunter Netherlands
P960 HNOMS Skjold Corvette Norway
P963 HNOMS Skudd Corvette Norway
S303 HNOMS Utvaer Submarine Norway
M352 HNOMS Rauma Mine hunter Norway
F331 NRP Álvares Cabral Frigate Portugal
F104 SPS Méndez Núñez Frigate Spain
F496 TCG Gökova Frigate Turkey
F497 TCG Göksu Frigate Turkey
623 ORP Mewa Mine hunter Poland
S359 TCG Burakreis Submarine Turkey
A135 RFA Argus Landing ship UK
F82 HMS Somerset Frigate UK
L12 HMS Ocean Landing ship UK
L3007 RFA Lyme Bay Landing ship UK
M269 TCG Anamur Mine hunter Turkey
M109 HMS Bangor Mine hunter UK
M33 HMS Brocklesby Mine hunter UK
M108 HMS Grimsby Mine hunter UK
M39 HMS Hurworth Mine hunter UK
S120 HMS Ambush Submarine UK
13 USNS Medgar Evers Auxiliary USA
68 USS Anzio Cruiser USA
69 USS Vicksburg Cruiser USA
75 USS Donald Cook Destroyer USA
78 USS Porter Destroyer USA
M107 HMS Pembroke Mine hunter UK

Joint Warrior 2015 (Updated)

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F-497 TCG Gökova currently taking part in Exercise Joint Warrior 2015.

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F496 TCG Göksu currently taking part in Exercise Joint Warrior 2015.

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M269 TCG Anamur currently taking part in Exercise Joint Warrior 2015.

 

According to media sources there are 55 warships taking part in Joint Warrior 2015. I was able to identify 53 of them.

Thanks to Sjoforsvaret for reminding me about HNOMS Thor Heyerdahl.

Any corrections and additions are always welcome.

Number Name Type Nationality
M921 BNS Lobelia Mine hunter Belgium
F930 BNS Leopold I Frigate Belgium
337 HMCS Frederıcton Frigate Canada
L16 HDMS Absalon Frigate Denmark
F363 HDMS Niels Juel Frigate Denmark
F362 HDMS Peter Willemoes Frigate Denmark
F357 HDMS Thetis Frigate Denmark
M642 FS Cassiopee Mine hunter France
D 644 FS Primauguet Destroyer France
M1093 FGS Auerbach Mine hunter Germany
M1063 FGS Bad Bevensen Mine hunter Germany
A516 FGS Donau Auxiliary Germany
P6126 FGS Frettchen Fast Attack Craft Germany
P6123 FGS Hermerlin Fast Attack Craft Germany
F261 FGS Madgeburg Corvette Germany
P6122 FGS Puma Fast Attack Craft Germany
A1442 FGS Spessart Auxiliary Germany
A514 FGS Werra Auxiliary Germany
P6125 FGS Zobel Fast Attack Craft Germany
F575 ITS Euro Frigate Italy
P843 HNLMS Groningen Patrol Netherlands
M857 HNLMS Makkum Mine hunter Netherlands
F831 HNLMS Van Amstel Frigate Netherlands
M864 HNLMS Willemstad Mine hunter Netherlands
S802 HNLMS Walrus Submarine Netherlands
M352 HNOMS Rauma Mine hunter Norway
P963 HNOMS Skudd Corvette Norway
A535 HNOMS Valkyrien Auxiliary Norway
P960 HNOMS Skudd Corvette Norway
S303 HNOMS Utvaer Submarine Norway
F314 HNOMS Thor Heyerdahl Frigate Norway
623 OPR Mewa Mine hunter Poland
F331 NRP Álvares Cabral Frigate Portugal
F104 Méndez Núñez Frigate Spain
M269 TCG Anamur Mine hunter Turkey
S359 TCG Burakreis Submarine Turkey
F497 TCG Göksu Frigate Turkey
F496 TCG Gökova Frigate Turkey
M33 HMS Brocklesby Mine hunter UK
M108 HMS Grimsby Mine hunter UK
P283 HMS Mersey Mine hunter UK
L12 HMS Ocean Landing ship UK
M107 HMS Pembroke Mine hunter UK
A135 RFA Argus Landing ship UK
L3007 RFA Lyme Bay Landing ship UK
S120 HMS Ambush Submarine UK
F82 HMS Somerset Frigate UK
13 USNS Medgar Evers Auxiliary USA
68 USS Anzio Cruiser USA
75 USS Donald Cook Destroyer USA
78 USS Porter Destroyer USA
69 USS Vicksburg Cruiser USA

Turkish Navy Conducts Deniz Yıldızı 2015 Exercise

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TCG Oruçreis saling to the Black Sea.

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TCG Salihreis on her way to the Black Sea.

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TCG Turgutreis making her northbound passage in IStanbul.

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TCG Yavuz at night, on her way to the Black Sea.

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TCG Atak making her northbound passage. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

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TCG Kılıç sailing to the Black Sea. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

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TCG Mızrak heading to the Black Sea. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

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TCG Zıpkın making her northbound passage. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

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TCG Bozcaada heading to the Black Sea. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

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TCG Bandırma making her northbound passage. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

 

On 6 April 2015 we had witnessed northbound passage of a large number of Turkish warships, 5 frigates, 2 corvettes, 4 fast attack craft in total. The reason is the start of the Deniz Yıldızı 2015 naval exercise in Black Sea.

According to the Turkish Navy website following units will take part in the exercise: 6 frigates, 3 corvettes, 5 fast attack craft, 2 submarines, 7 auxiliaries, 2 patrol boats,  3 maritime surveillance planes, 7 helicopters helicopters.  From Coast Guard 2 OPV’s, 4 cutters and 1 SAR helicopter will participate in the exercise.

The exercise is scheduled to end on 16 April. On 11 April the participating ships will make port visits in several Black Sea towns.

This is the list of the participants as far as I could find:

Number Name Type
A-573 TCG Binbaşı Saadettin Gürcan Tanker
A-XXX Auxiliary
A-XXX Auxiliary
A-XXX Auxiliary
A-XXX Auxiliary
A-XXX Auxiliary
A-XXX Auxiliary
F-240 TCG Yavuz Frigate
F-241 TCG Turgutreis Frigate
F-245 TCG Oruçreis Frigate
F-246 TCG Salihreis Frigate
F-500 TCG Bozcaada Corvette
F-502 TCG Bandırma Corvette
F-XXX Corvette
F-XXX Frigate
F-XXX Frigate
P-330 TCG Kılıç Fast attack craft
P-332 TCG Mızrak Fast attack craft
P-336 TCG Zıpkın Fast attack craft
P-337 TCG Atak Fast attack craft
P-XXX Fast attack craft
P-XXX Patrol boat
P-XXX Patrol boat
S-XXX Submarine
S-XXX Submarine
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