>TCSG-312 Upgraded With A STAMP


TCSG-312 with a new STAMP

Turkish Coast Guard craft TCSG-312 seems to have a brand new STAMP installed.

STAMP is a remote-controlled Stabilized Machine Gun Platform developed by Turkish defense contractor ASELSAN.

This fast response boat locally know as MRTP-33 class, was designed and build by Turkish Yonca-Onuk shipyard. Although there are 13 similar boats in service. Previously only one of them TCSG-307 had a STAMP installed.

When commissioned in October 2008, TCSG-312 was armed with a 20 mm manually aimed automatic gun like the rest of her class. Today’s photo show that she has received a STAMP with (probably) a 12,7mm machine gun installed. The MRTP class boats can make 75 knots on calm seas and up to 60 knots on 3 sea force. It is impossible for anybody to stand on board  leave alone operating a gun. The STAMP was developed out of this neeed.

STAMP on Georgian patrol boat Sokhumi

Though made by a Turkish company the introduction of STAMP and STOP (Stabilised Gun Platform) into armed forces has been initially slow.
STAMP was exported to Georgia on board of a MRTP-33.

Two STAMP’s are installed on board of Milgem Class  F-511 TCG Heybeliada and following ships as close-in weapon system.

Two STAMPS are installed on P-1200 class New Type Patrol Boats against asymmetrical threats.

>Russia Builds Up Sea Border Patrols Around Abkhazia


© RIA Novosti. Vyacheslav Popov

Russian news agency Ria Novosti reports that the fifth Russian Mangust class patrol boat has arrived in Abkhazia to help the former Georgian republic guard its maritime border in the Black Sea.

A Russian coast guard division, based at the Black Sea port of Ochamchira in Abkhazia, is expected to have up to 10 Mangust and Sobol class vessels in the future to patrol 215 kilometers (about 133 miles) of the Abkhazian maritime border.

Georgia considers Abkhazia and its waters part of Georgian territory, and has declared any unauthorized maritime shipments of goods to be illegal. It has already seized a number of cargo vessels heading to Abkhazia. But Georgia lack any naval military power to prevent Russians sending partrol ships and patroling Abkhazian waters.

>Turkish Coast Cutter To Visit Georgian Ports


The coast cutter TCSG-122 will sail to Georgia on Wednesday.

The cutter, currently stationed in Rize will visit Poti first. She is scheduled to arrive at Poti on 14 July. Official visits and some joint exercises will be conducted. On 15th, TCSG-122, will leave Poti for Batumi. After some more visits and exercises, she will return to Turkey on 16 July 2010.

Turkish naval units regurarly visit Georgia and conduct exercises with the Georgian counterparts.

The photo shows TCSG-134 a near sister of TCSG-122.

>French Frigate Will Conduct Exercises In Georgia

>According to excellent webpage http://www.navy.ru/, the French warship D-643 Jean De Vienne will visit Batumi, Georgia in July and will held joint military exercises.

The visit of the French warship will last from 8 to 11 July. The ship will be open to public on 9th and 10th July.

It will be not easy for the French to win the hearts and minds of Georgian population with that visit, then most of the Georgians resent the French for the sales of big and modern amphibious Mistral class ships to Russia.

It will be one of the rare occasions when a French warship sails to the Black Sea.

>Varna Visit Of BlackSeaFor Is Over

According to the Blackseafor commander, the On-Call Naval Force of Black Sea navies BlackSeaFor has left the Bulgarian port of Varna to conduct its next stage of exercises. The April 2010 activation of BlackSeafor is scheduled to end on 27th April and is commanded by Bulgarian Navy.

As reported earlier, the first stage of the exercises was conducted in the south-western region of the Black Sea which involved search and rescue operations, and replenishment and refuelling at sea as well as monitoring of civilian aircraft.

During the next stages, the Blackseafor warships will exercise tactical manoeuvres, conduct combat operations against surface ships, practise air defence and communications, assistance to ships in distress and ship inspection.

Click here for photos of the Ereğli port visit.

>USS John L Hall In Georgia (Part II)

>US frigate FFG-32 USS John L Hall is still in Georgia, conducting joint exercise with Georgian Coast Guard.

Reuters has some fresh photos.

>USS John L Hall in Georgia

>After completing a port visit in Samsun, Turkey, USN frigate FFG-32 USS John L Hall sailed to Georgia.

The US warship arrived in Georgia Thursday for exercises with the local coast guard, according to the US embassy.

Of course the Russian officials have criticized the visits as provocative as they did for seven visits by US warships in Georgia since August 2008.

USS John L Hall will stay in Georgia till 4th March 2010.

>US-Build Radar Station On The Coast of Georgia,Will Open In 2010

>According to defencetalk website a coastal radar station will open in Georgia in January 2010. This station is last of the three radar stations funded and builds by USA through, US Army Corps of Engineers.

“The radar stations are important because they permit the Georgian Coast Guard to monitor Georgia’s maritime borders and identify vessels entering and exiting Georgian territorial waters,” said James Kelly, chief of party for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Georgia Border Security and Law Enforcement assistance program

The stations, from south to north are located in Gonio near the Turkish border, in Chakvi, half-way up the Black Sea coast of Georgia and Anaklia, in the northern coastal area.

The cost of the three radar stations runs up to $1.500.000,-

This the photo of Anaklia radar station, located near the border with Russian-occupied Abkhazia from US Army official web page.

The radar seems to be a commercial maritime search radar.

>Russian Coast Guard Vessels in Ochamchire

>According to Georgian web site Civil.Ge two Russian coast guard boats have arrived at the Ochamchire harbor in the break away region of Abkhazia.

Georgia wants to block the sea borne trade in Abkhazia in order to force this region to stay in the Georgian republic.

Georgian naval units intercepted more than 20 ships in the Black Sea off Abkhazia in 2009.

Russia announced back in September, that it was going to send own coast guard vessels in order to prevent Georigian coast guard to intercept ships traveling to Abkhazia. Now apprently the first units have arrived in the region.

It is possible that we soon hear small scale naval gun fights between Russian and Georgian coast guard vessels if the tension remains as high as it is now.

>More Escalation in the Black Sea

>The naval tensions in the Black Sea will not smooth down soon. On Tuesday 15th September 2009, Russia announced that it will act against the Georgian coast guard, if they try to prevent merchant ships to sail to Abkhazia. On the same day Russia signed military cooperation deals with Abkhazia, S.Ossetia.

Russian coast guard chief Lt. Gen. Viktor Trufanov said that Georgia has illegally intercepted more than 20 ships in the Black Sea off Abkhazia this year,

“We will do everything to ensure the security of the Russian state, the security of the Abkhazian state. We have a task and we will carry it out,” Interfax quoted Trufanov as saying. He said that Russia forces will intercept but not destroy any Georgian ships that try to stop ships in Abkhazian waters from now on.

The latest row started when Georgia intercepted a Turkish tanker off the coast of Turkey, well in international waters of the Black Sea in August. The tanker M/T Buket was taken to Poti and detained there. After a qucik trial the captain was sentenced to 24 years in jail. But first the crew, later the captain were relased on bail and returend to Turkey.

Both Georgia and Russia are important trade partners in this region. The break away regions of Georgia are also tempting targets for Turkish entrepreneurs for investment and commerce.

There will be more war of words and muscle flexing in the coming stormy days of the winter.

%d bloggers like this: