TCG Giresun Escorts Turkish Aid Ship To Somalia

M/V Sebat leaving Mersin harbour. Photo: AFAD.

On 4. June 2017, bulk carrier M/V Sebat, left Turkey with 13 thousand tons of food and aid on board. The ship’s destination is Mogadishu, Somalia.

The cargo on board of M/V Sebat was organised by Turkish Red Crescent, Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA) and Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD).

The ship will be escorted by Turkish frigate TCG Giresun. In pervious years Turkish Navy, provided protection to other ships, carrying humanitarian aid from Turkey to the region.

After escorting the aid ship to her destination TCG Giresun will join the piracy task force CTF-151 and perform patrols in Gulf of Aden. There is a Seahawk helicopter a diving chamber, one naval special forces team and one VBSS team on board. The ship will return to Turkey in November 2017.

This is the fifth deployment of TCG Giresun to the region. She was there in 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2015.

TCG Giresun Received Her New Radar And Missile Launcher


TCG Giresun passing through the Bosphorus. Note her new Smart Mk2 3D radar and MK41 VLS system. Photo: Yörük Işık. Used with permission.

The Gabya (ex Perry) class frigate F-491 TCG Giresun seems to have gotten her new radar and vertical launcher. She is the last ship to received this upgrade.

The new Thales SMART-S Mk2 3D radar replaced the incumbent AN/SPS-49(V)4 radar which was 2D. The addition of 8 cell Mk41 in the forecastle increased the range and the number of the anti-air missiles carried on board. The Mk41 will hold ESSM missiles. while the Mk13 keep housing the SM-1 Standard missiles.

TCG Giresun is the fourth and final ship to undergo through this modernization. The other three are F-495 TCG Gediz, F-496 TCG Gökova, F-497 TCG Göksu.

TCG Giresun, The NATO Flagship Saves 7 Yemeni Fishermen And Catches 14 Somali Pirates

TCG Giresun’s helicopter hovering over the dhow.

According to a statement from Turkish General Staff, F-491 TCG Giresun boarded a Yemeni fishing vessel on the morning of 11th May 2012.

TCG Giresun a Gabya class frigate, is the Turkish contribution to NATO’s SNMG-2 task force. This tack force is commanded by Read Admiral Sinan Tosun. SNMG-2 is currently acting as NATO’s anti piracy task force TF-508.

The S-70B Seahawk helicopter attached to TCG Giresun spotted the dhow at 14:50, 190 nautical miles off the coast of Yemen. The dhow acting as a mother ship was stopped by the helicopter and TCG Giresunarrived at the dhow and the naval special forces team boarded the dhow at 17:00. 14 Somali pirates were arrested and 7 Yemeni fisherman, the original crew of the dhow were freed by naval commandos.

Sized equipment and weapons

Nine AK-47 infantry rifles, one RPG-7 rocket launcher, three RPG-7 warheads, ammunition and materials associated with piracy such as ladders, extra fuel barrels, spare engine, GPS devices and mobile phones were seized.

As the commanding officer of the task force is already on the board of the TCG Giresun, I guess the communication and forwarding of the orders happened in a fast and smooth way.

Click herefor the official statement of Turkish General Staff.

Naval commandos boarding the dhow

TCG Giresun Catches Seven Pirates

This is not a new story. Sorry for the delay.

On 17th March 2012, the Turkish frigate F-491 TCG Giresun caught 7 pirates in a skiff of the coast of Somalia.

At first, the skiff was intercepted by the on board helicopter of the frigate 60 nautical miles south of Yemeni coast just inside the IRTC. When the frigate reached the skiff, the special forces teams boarded the skiff and neutralized  7 pirates. The five AK-47 infantry rifles, one RPG-7 rocket launcher, ammunition and other piracy paraphernalia such as hooks, ladders, extra fuel barrels, GPS devices and mobile phones found on the skiff were sized.

TCG Giresun is the Turkish flagship of NATO’s  Standing Maritime Group 2 which is currently conducting Operation Ocean Shield.

Below are official photos from Turkish General Staff web site:

TCG Giresun Exercised With Russians And EUNAVFOR In Gulf Of Aden

Russian destroyer Admiral Tributs. Photo: EUNAVFOR.

The Turkish flagship of NATO’s  Standing Maritime Group 2 F-491 TCG Giresun took part in a joint replenishment at sea exercise with EUNAVFOR and Russian ships in Gulf of Aden.

According to the EU Navfor press release the Europeans showed their replenishment at sea skills first and later watched how Russians do it.

The flagship of EUNAVFOR,  A-14 SPS Patiño refueled the Turkish frigate later, the exercise was repeated by the Russian flagship Admiral Tributs with the Russian tanker Pechenga.

Unfortunately EUNAVFOR press corps did not made any photos during this trilateral  exercise.

During the morning (of 31th January 2012) , the EU NAVFOR and NATO ships demonstrated to several Russian observers on-board the two Flagships a RAS manoeuvre where the ships steer parallel courses only 40 – 50 metres apart while passing fuel between the ships. In the afternoon, the same challenging seamanship exercise was performed by the Russian Task Force units, this time watched by EU NAVFOR and NATO observers

The exercise was coordinated to improve the interoperability among ships from different forces that operate in the Horn of Africa countering Somali pirates.

TCG Giresun Hosts The Commander Of CTF-151

The commander of two counter piracy task forces CTF-151 and TF-508 (NATO SNMG-2) met to discuss joint operations and coordination between these two task forces.

Currently Turkish Navy has the command on the SNMG-2. More over  Turkish Navy did led the CTF-151 twice 5 May -13 August 2009 and 1 September -29 November 2010.

Commodore Aage Buur Jensen Danish Royal Navy, Commander, Combined Task Force 151 (counter piracy) met with his NATO colleague, Rear Admiral Siman A. Tosun, Commander, Task Force 508, during counter-piracy patrols at sea.

 The meeting took place on board the Turkish frigate F-491 TCG Giresun on 20th January 2012. 

The two task force commanders discussed the need for continuing mutual assistance and resource allocation, as well as sharing knowledge and experience, in order to augment the international counter-piracy effort.

CTF 151 is currently embarked on USS HALSEY which recently assumed the role of the CTF 151 flagship for Commodore Aage Buur Jensen, Royal Danish Navy and his multi-national CTF 151 command staff Jan. 13. CTF 151 transferred command from the Pakistani Navy who was stationed aboard the USS KIDD (DDG 100).

CTF 151 is one of three Task Forces assigned to Combined Maritime Forces. Established in February 2002 the Task Force’s key mission is to conduct counter-piracy operations in the Red Sea, Gulf of Aden, Somali Basin , Arabian Sea and Indian Ocean. It protects and defends the legitimate use of the ocean by fisherman and merchants and stands ready to assist any mariner in distress.

TCG Giresun Returned Home

The frigate F-491 TCG Giresun, Turkish contribution to NATO’s SNMG-2  has completed its anti-piracy mission with this task force, off Somalia and returned to Turkey, Turkish Naval Forces Command said in a statement on Wednesday.

The frigate docked at the Aksaz Naval Base in Marmaris after a 151-day mission.

During its mission off Somalia, TCG Giresun captured a total of 26 Somali pirates. The crew of the frigate boarded M/T Guanabara and M/V Full City when they were attacked by pirates. She also saved as Yemeni fishing boat, captured by the pirates and used as mother ship.

The Turkish Naval Task Force is the current Turkish anti piracy force in the region. Click here to read about the acts of TCG Giresun in Gulf Of Aden.


TCG Giresun Saves M/V Full City (UPDATED)

 The Panama flagged and Chinese owned merchant ship M/V Full City was attacked by Somali pirates yesterday (05.05.2011) morning. She was 400 nautical miles off the coast of India.

The Turkish frigate F-491 TCG Giresun, the nearest coalition warship was ordered to proceed and help the attacked merchant ship.

During the deployment TCG Giresun contacted the Chinese naval units in the region and received the information that the crew of M/V Full City was able to hide themselves inside a citadel before being captured by the pirates. 

Upon arriving to M/V Full City, that was damaged by the rocket-propelled grenade and small arms fire of the pirates, communication with the crew of the ship was established.  Later the naval special forces teams of board of the Turkish frigate, fast-roped to the ship and secured her.

When the search revealed that there were no pirates on board, and all the crew was safe and sound M/V Full City continues her journey.

The deployment of TCG Giresun turned out to be a exciting one. This is the sixth occasion where the frigate had to intervene.

The damage of RPG fire is visible

TCG Giresun Frees Yemeni Dhow
TCG Giresun Helps M/V Hanjin Tianjin
TCG Giresun Finds 2 Pirate Skiffs And Arrests The Pirates
TCG Giresun Helps M/T Guanabara
TCG Giresun Foils A Pirate Attack To M/V Kıran Asya

All photos from Turkish General Staff webpage.

UPDATE: According to influential naval blog Information Dissemination, a ASW patrol plane of Indian Navy scared the pirates on board of M/V Full City away, before the arrival of TCG Giresun.

An Indian Navy TU-142 maritime reconnaissance aircraft made several low sorties over the MV Full City, 450 nautical miles (850 km) off Karwar in Karnataka, warning the pirates to immediately leave the vessel or face the wrath of Indian Navy and Coast Guard ships that were fast closing in.

The warnings worked and the pirates scampered into the skiff from which they had boarded the vessel and sailed toward a nearby mothership, which immediately set off toward Somalia at full speed, the official said, requesting anonymity due to service rules.

And as it seems, USN found the dhow used as mothership during the attack to M/V Full City and estroyed paraphernalia on the dhow, including weapons, excessive fuel and other equipment commonly used in the commission of acts of piracy. They also sank a small skiff towed by the dhow; these skiffs are often used for actual attacks and boardings by pirates.

Turkish naval special forces team with the Chinese crew

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 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

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