Greek Frigate HS Hydra Is Returning Home Early

HS Hydra in Bosphorus. An old photo from 1998. She is coming home early from the party.

While the families of the crew of the Greek frigate F-452 HS Hydra celebrate, her early return from Horn of Africa, this shows the dire fiscal situation the Greek armed forces are facing.

In early February, HS Hydra was send by Greek Navy to participate in the Operation Atalanta, the anti-piracy operation of EU off the coast of Somalia. She was supposed to operate in the area till 4th April, but she is returning to Greece at the moment, one month earlier than planned. She also will not take part in Atalanta during the second half of the year, according to the Greek Defense Ministry.

As, it costs  Greece 2.5 million euros a month to operate a frigate off the coast of Somalia, the early return and the cancellation of the second trip will save 7.5 million euros from the Greek tax payers money.

Two years ago Bulgarian Navy toyed with the idea of sending a frigate to Gulf of Aden to combat piracy but later they had to give up upon that idea as the Bulgarian Government was not able to create the necessary funding for the operation.

It is definitely not a cheap thing, to station a warship away from homeland for extended periods of time as both Greece and Bulgaria learned by the hard way.




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.

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