TCG Giresun Frees Yemeni Dhow

Confiscated Weapons. Official Turkish Navy Photo.

Turkish Navy reported that F-491 TCG Giresunfreed a Yemeni fishing boat from Somali pirates on 24 April 2011.

The suspicious looking fishing dhow was sighted 300 miles of the coast of Umman. and the nearest warship, TCG Giresun was ordered to intercept the boat and to inspect it.

When the dhow was in sight of the TCG Giresun the VBSS team consisting of naval special forces boarded the Yemeni vessel. The pirates surrendered with out a gun fight.  The confiscated weapons were dumped to the sea.

The dhow turned out to be a Yemeni vessel, captured by the Somali pirates on 11 April 2011 to be used as a mother ship. The seven Yemeni fishermen on board were freed by the Turkish sailors.

The number of the arrested pirates was not mentioned in the official statement. But if you look to the photo below and count the heads, there are at least 16 pirates ready to be taken to the frigate on the white small boat.

Captured Pirates. Official Turkish Navy Photo.

Click here for the official statement.

TCG Karaburun Entered Into Service

TCG Tuzla, the first ship of her class, sister of TCG Karaburun.

The second boat of the New Type Patrol Boat, P-1201 TCG Karaburun was handed over to Turkish Navy on 20 April, 2010 Wednesday 19 April 2011.

This is a temporary commissioning as the warranty period of the shipyard is still valid. The boat will be handed over to Turkish Navy permanently after the expiration of the warranty period.

These patrol boats will replace 16 old patrol boats Turkish Navy is currently using. These new boats  have a  40mm gun, 2 STAMP stabilized remote controlled machine gun platforms with one 12,7mm machine gun each and a ASW mortar as main weapons.

The main duty of these boats is to protect important harbors, perform coastal patrol and ASW missions.

In May 2007, Dearsan Shipyard was awarded with the 550 million USD contract by with SSM. The shipyard’s in-house naval design team developed the boats. This is the first ship building programme of this size, where warships for Turkisy Navy are being built in a private shipyard.

About 70 per cent of the programme is local content, including: Aselsan built stabilized remote controlled machine gun platforms, FLIR, anti-submarine rocket launcher, Roketsan built ASW rockets, Havelsan built navigation, communications, command-and-control and weapon systems and Yaltes built operator consoles and tactical bridge display units.

Turkmenistan is the first international customer for these boats. In February it was announced that two of these boats will be built in a shipyard on the Caspian Sea for Turkmenistan. The construction will be supported by Dearsan and material packages from Turkey.

I wish P-1201 TCG Karaburun, following seas and friendly winds.

PNS Alamgir In Turkey

Handover ceremony of PNS Alamgir. Official US Navy Photo.

Yesterday, Pakistan’s newest frigate F-230 PNS Alamgir arrived in Gölcük Naval Base for a 4 day visit.

PNS Alamgir is a Oliver Perry Hazard class frigate. She was decommissioned from USN. She was commissioned in Pakistani navy on 31 August 2010. She left USA on 10 February 2011 and since then she is on her maiden voyage to Pakistan. Pakistan is the ninth operator of Perry class ships.

According to Pakistani Embassy in Ankara the ship will stay till 24 April in Gölcük Naval Base, the main naval base of Turkish Navy. A number of port and sea trials will be conducted according to the embassy.

Turkish Navy operates 8 Perry class frigates since 1998 and has an extensive knowledge about the operation, maintenance about these ships. Furthermore Turkish Navy is upgrading its Perry class frigates with moderns combat management systems and vertical launchers.

Turkish Navy has a lot of know-how to share with the Pakistani Navy.

I am sure that the port visit of PNS Alamgir will be intensive and exhausting, but a pleasant visit.

TCG Giresun Helps Hanjin Tianjin

Turkey’s current contribution to NATO’s SNMG-2, F-491 TCG Giresun was the first ship to help the Korean merchantship Hanjin Tianjin, yesterday.
According to news reports, the Korean ship was apparently attacked by Somali pirates early Thursday. The crew of the merchant ship was able to hide inside the citadel before the pirates could take them as hostages.

TCG Giresun was,  just 80 miles away from the container ship at the time of the attack, first arrived at the scene to help South Korea’s rescue operation. TCG Giresun  provided necessary information to the Korean destroyer Choi Young  until the she arrived at the scene at 4:40 p.m.

Officials add that the international combined fleet’s Turkish warship that reached the Panama-registered freighter some three hours after the alarm went off, had already informed that there were no signs of the attackers.

Later when Korean naval commandos boarded Hanjin Tianjin they found the crew well inside the citadel. There was no sign of the pirates apart from a few rounds of ammunition and some foot prints.

TCG Giresun, comprehended two pirate skiffs at the beginning of this month and arrested the pirates.

Hat tip: Eaglespeak

Admiral Sir Mark Stanhope in Ankara

Adm Stanhope and Adm Yiğit. Official Turkish Navy Photo.

Admiral Sir Mark Stanhope, the First Sea Lord and Chief of the Naval Staff of the United Kingdom visited his counter part Admiral Yiğit Uğur and the Chief of Turkish General Staff General Işık Koşaner today.

Neither the Turkish Navy nor the Turkish General Staff released any public statements about the visits and topics discussed.

Besides the usual relations between the two countries the has been a marked discussions on naval cooperation.

UK – Turkey: Naval Industry Inward Mission (Part 1)

UK – Turkey: Naval Industry Inward Mission (Part 2)

New Photos Of F-511 TCG Heybeliada and P-1200 TCG Tuzla

F-511 TCG Heybeliada

P-1200 TCG Tuzla

Over the weekend I was able to take photos of the two warships that have been pride of the Turkish naval shipbuilding industry. P-1200 TCG Tuzla made her first port visit in Istanbul. F-511 TCG Heybeliada is continuing her sea trials.

Ay Class Submarines Modernization Contract Signed

In March 2010, a modernization project for the Ay class has emerged. Ay (Type 209/1200) class submarines are the oldest boats now in service. The oldest one was commissioned 34 and the newest one 20 years ago.

According to the plan the newest two boats, S-351 TCG Doğanay and S-352 TCG Dolunay were to receive an extensive modernization. The periscope, ESM / ECM and communication system of the existing boats would be upgraded. In order to keep costs down a modern purpose-built Underwater Command and Control System integration was not planned. These old boats are going to get some might punch though. It is planned to modify four of the torpedo tubes so that they can use Mk48 ADCAP Mod6 AT heavy weight torpedoes.

In December 2010, the Defense Industry Executive Committee (SSIK) decided to start contract negotiations with STM for the upgrade of Type 209 Atılay class submarines.

On 31 March 2011, the contact about the modernization of Ay class submarines was signed between STM and Undersecretariat for Defence Industries. The contract covers the replacement of existing Kollmorgen the periscopes with Zeiss periscopes either SERO 400 or OMS 100. Furthermore  a new inertial navigation system from Raytheon and an ESM system from Aselsan, ARES-2N will replace the existing ones. The representatives of the subcontractors were also at the contract signing ceremony.

The most noticeable omission in the contract is the modification of torpedo tubes to receive the Mk48 ADCAP  torpedoes. I am not sure why this was not included in the contract. It could be a cost saving measure or maybe using the newest torpedoes from the oldest submarines was considered unnecessary.

The modernization of S-351 TCG Doğanay and S-352 TCG Dolunay will be conducted in Gölcük Naval Shipyard and will last 48 months.

Operational Tempo Of Turkish Navy

Apparently Turkish Navy will be very busy for the first half of April as 10 of the 16 frigates of  Turkish Navy will be on deployment.

4 frigates are taking part in exercise Deniz Yıldızı 2011. 4 frigates are in Operation Unified Protector, 1 frigate in Operation Ocean Shield, 1 frigate in BlackSeafor. This makes %62,5 of all frigates.

According to Turkish defence magazine Savunma Ve Havacılık, one Perry class frigate is currently in overhaul, receiving Mk-41 VLS system.  In that case, 10 out of 15 available frigates will be on deployment. This makes %66,7 of all frigates.

I honestly do not know how long this working tempo can be sustained. But as it is, it is impressive.

Turkish Navy Started Exercise Deniz Yıldızı 2011

The annual exercise of Turkish Navy, Deniz Yıldızı (Sea Star) 2011 had started two days ago. 

4 frigates, 1 submarine, 9 fast attack craft, 5 auxiliaries, 6 helicopters, 1 maritime patrol plane, 4 Coast Guard boats, 2 Coast Guard helicopters, naval special forces teams and air force units will take part in this exercise.

The exercise consists of two stages. In first stage, asymmetric warfare training, mine warfare training, actual guided missile firings, training for  activities in crisis and combat will be conducted.

Furthermore air force units will exercise with live ammunition.

After the ending of the first stage the warships will make port visits in  Constance Romania and Varna, Bulgaria.

In the second stage the warships taking part in the exercise will train together with the BlackSeafor maritime task force.

The exercise will end on 12 April 2011.

During Deniz Yıldızı 2010, an old minesweeper, ex-TCG Seddülbahir (M-513) was sunk as target.

TCG Giresun Finds Two Pirate Skiffs And Arrests Pirates


Somali pirates surrender to Turkish Navy

Somali pirates surrender to Turkish Navy

On 4. April 2011, TCG Giresun cought two skiffs, apparently used for piracy, Turkish General Staff reported.

A japanse naval patrol plane spotted two skiffs, approximately  70 nautical miles north of Somalia on 4 April 2011, at 09:15 local time.

The current Turkish contribution to NATO’s SNMG-2, TCG Giresun was tasked with the interception of these skiffs. The frigate arrived at the vicinity of the skiffs at around 14:14 local time. The on board helicopter stopped the skiffs and the Turkish Naval special forces teams boarded the skiffs, arresting the pirates and confiscating piracy paraphernalia.

A very interesting and obvious piece of information omitted in the announcement of Turkish General Staff is the number of the pirates arrested. The text is written in such manner as if the frigate found the skiffs and confiscated them. If there were no photos with the text it would be impossible to realize that some (my personal guess is at least 7 – 8) pirates have been arrested.

More(?) Somali pirates surrender to Turkish Navy

RPG rounds found on the skiff

RPG rounds found on the skiff

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