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 Göksu Escorted Humanitarian Aid Ship To Somalia

TCG Göksu escorted M/V Star Prince to Somalia.

TCG Göksu escorted M/V Star Prince to Somalia.

According to the official webpage of Turkish General Staff, Turkish frigate F-497 TCG Göksu ride shot-gun to Tanzanian flagged merchant ship M/V Star Prince for ten days.

The two ships rendezvoused off the coast of Jedda, Saudi Arabia and traveled together till M/V Star Price arrived its destination: Mogadishu, Somalia. She was carrying humanitarian aid from Turkish Red Crescent.

F-497 TCG Göksu is the current Turkish contribution to the CTF-151 anti-piracy naval task force.

TCG Gökçeada Escorts Somalia Bound Cargo Vessel

TCG Gökova escorting the merchant vessel M/V Aqua Luna in Gulf of Aden. Photo: Official Turkish Navy Photo.

TCG Gökçeada escorting the merchant vessel M/V Aqua Luna in Gulf of Aden. Photo: Official Turkish Navy Photo.

The Turkish frigate F-494 TCG Gökçeada escorted the merchant ship M/V Aqua Luna carrying Turkish aid to Somalia.

M/V Aqua Luna chartered by Turkish Red Crescent was carrying 90 thousand canned goods,  5 thousand tons of sugar, 5 thousand tons of flour and many other goods and machinery need to overhaul Somalia’s infrastructure.

I was assuming that this escort duty would be performed by TCG Gökova as she has been in the with SNMG-2. The departure of TCG Gökçeada to the region was not announced either by the Turkish Navy or The Turkish General Staff. Both organisations used to be open about these deployments in the past.

Now, Turkish Navy has again two warships “East of Suez”.



An Everyday Heroism? Turkish Sailors Take A 80 Miles Boat Ride In The Middle Of The Indian Ocean

The original text of the thank you note. Photo: Turkish General Staff.

The original text of the thank you note. Photo: Turkish General Staff.

Today, The Turkish General Staff website run a thank you note (an e-mail actually) from a recovering Turkish merchant sailor who got very ill when his ship was in Gulf of Aden 15 days ago.

According to the e-mail, the sailor, electrician officer on board of M/V Tuna 7 (in the actual e-mail the name of the ship is not mentioned but the maritime portal confirmed the ship) got sick at very late night on 13th January 2013.

The ship was in a convoy protected by the Chinese Navy.  The Chinese warship offered help over the radio but this was not enough.

The Turkish frigate F-496 TCG Gökova was 80 miles away at this point but the ship send its RHIB any way with the executive officers, medical officer and a small security team on board. This team performed the first medical treatment to the ill sailor who was later transferred to a hospital in Salalah, Oman.

It is no easy feat to travel 80 miles on a small boat in the middle of pirate infested waters in the dead of the night to save a life. Hats off to those who made gave this episode a happy ending.





TCG Gökova Escorts Mogadishu Bound Cargo Vessel

F-496 TCG Gökova escorting M/V Aqua Luna.

F-496 TCG Gökova escorting M/V Aqua Luna. Photo: Official Turkish General Staff photo.

F-496 TCG Gökova escorting M/V Aqua Luna. Photo: Official Turkish General Staff photo.

F-496 TCG Gökova escorting M/V Aqua Luna.  The Mk-41VLS launcher is clearly visible.Photo: Official Turkish General Staff photo.

According to the announcement made by Turkish General Staff, the Turkish frigate F-496 TCG Gökova escorted the cargo vessel M/V Aqua Luna as she was carrying humanitarian cargo to Somalia. The Turkish owned and Monrovia flagged freighter left the port of Mersin in late November and passed through the Suez Canal on 30th November.

TCG Gökova escorted  the cargo vessel during her 2650 nautical miles long trip. M/V Aqua Luna was chartered by Turkish Red Crescent and was carrying undisclosed humanitarian aid to Somalia. The Trip took 11 days from the Suez Canal to Mogadishu.

Although it has not been officially announced yet it is highly possible for F-496 TCG Gökova to replace the F-492 TCG Gemlik in CTF-151.

Turkey Will Command CTF-151 For The Fourth Time

Turkish Navy announced that it will take the helm of Combined Task Force-151 between 19 September and 13 December 2012. The Turkish frigate F-492 TCG Gemlik will act as the flagship.

There will be a hand-over ceremony on board of the current DDH-978 ROKS Wang Geon on 19th September 2012 in Manama, Bahrain.

Previously Turkish Navy led the CTF-151:

  • May – August 2009
  • September – December 2010
  • September – December 2011

Turkish Warship Protects Aid Ship

M/V Dadalı escorted by F-492 TCG Gemlik. Photo: Turkish General Staff.

Two warships of Turkish Navy escorted the merchant ship M/V Dadalı during her voyage to Mogadishu.

M/V Dadalı chartered by Turkish Red Crescent was carrying humanitarian aid to Somalia. According to the photo published by Turkish General Staff most of visible cargo on board of the merchant ship consists of various types of trucks.

During the first part of the 3030 miles and 19 says long trip from Mersin, Turkey to Alexandria Egypt, the merchant ship was escorted by the corvette F-500 TCG Bozcada. The Gabya class frigate F-492 TCG Gemlik took over the escort duty in the Red Sea to the final destination of M/V Dadalı in Mogadishu, Somalia.


Spanish Port For US Navy’s BMD Ships

Spain agreed to host the ships US Navy is deploying to Mediterranean for NATO’s missile defense system.

Today the [NATO] security partnership takes a major step in the right direction,” Panetta told reports at the briefing.
“With four Aegis ships at Rota,” he added, “the alliance is significantly boosting combined naval capabilities in the Mediterranean and enhancing our ability to ensure the security of this vital region.”
The relocation of assets is part of an ongoing U.S. effort to better position forces and defensive capabilities in coordination with European allies and partners, the secretary added.
In 2009, President Barack Obama announced that the United States would adopt a new approach to ballistic missile defense in Europe called the European Phased Adaptive Approach. The architecture would be more comprehensive than a previous program, Obama said in a statement at the time, and would deploy proven, cost-effective capabilities and ultimately protect the United States and its NATO allies against short-, medium- and intermediate-range missile threats.
The program is being implemented in four phases, beginning this year and ending in 2020. So far, Romania, Poland, Turkey and now Spain have agreed to participate by hosting land-based radars or missile sites or porting Aegis ballistic-missile-defense-capable ships carrying interceptor missiles.
“These ships will support NATO’s critical efforts to build an effective missile defense alongside important agreements that were recently concluded with Romania, Poland and Turkey,” Panetta said.
Spain’s decision represents a critical step in implementing the European phased-adaptive approach, as the alliance’s leaders agreed to at the 2010 NATO summit in Lisbon, Portugal, he added.
Beyond missile defense, the secretary said, the Aegis destroyers will perform other missions, including participating in standing NATO maritime groups and joining in naval exercises, port visits and maritime security cooperation activities.

The other candidate host nation was Italy. I guess Rota’s legacy as a US navy forward base during the Cold War, and Spain’s own Aegis equipped ships with an option to be upgraded  to engage in BM defence was among the factors favoring this city’s selection.

Needles to say Greece or Turkey, much closer to the ultimate patrol areas for the BMD ships were not considered as candidates because they are considered unreliable in US views.  My comment from last years post about the topic turned to be correct.

But I do not expect any US warship to be home ported in Turkey as the political climate is not suitable yet. The politics of the previous US government alienated Turkey and the recent administration has not done enough to reverse the trend. The neocons in USA feel angry against Turkey as they think Turkey did not gave enough support for their war against global terrorism. Therefore it would be very difficult for both governments to sell the idea of permanent existence of US warships in Turkish ports to their nations.


Turkish Aid Ship In Somalia

M/V Burak A. in Mogadishu

Turkish merchant ship M/V Burak A. carrying 5.000 tons of humanitarian including 8 full equipped ambulances, 1 forklift, 5 jeeps, 6 generators, 500 tents, 5000 blankets and 4.500 tons of food and medical supplies arrived in Mogadishu .

The ship left Istanbul on 16th August and escorted by the frigate F-494 TCG Gediz all the way.  After escorting M/V Burak A.  away from dangerous waters the frigate will join the CTF-151.

On the same day a 213-member high-level delegation from Turkey completed a one-day visit to Mogadishu to learn the needs of Somalia and explore business opportunities in the country. It is the largest such delegation to Somalia since 1991.


TCG Gediz Escorts Turkish Aid Ship To Mogadishu

The Mk-41 on TCG Gediz.

The first MK-41 VLs equipped Gabya (Perry) class frigate F-495 TCG Gediz is on her way to Gulf Of Aden.

In 2009 it was announced that four of the eight Gabya class frigates in Turkish inventory would receive a 8 cell Mk-41 VLS for ESSM and a new 3D radar for improved observation and fire control capabilities. This upgrade is similar to the modernization project conducted by Royal Australian Navy known as Project SEA 1390 or FFG UP.

Thales Smart S Mk-2 is selected as the new 3D radar, but it is not installed on the frigate.  This will be the first overseas deployment for TCG Gediz after her modernization. She will join CTF-151 and will conduct anti piracy operations.

M/V Burak A. Photo: Ulf Kornfeld via

But before joining the CTF-151 she will escort the Turkish flagged merchantman M/V Burak A till port of Mogadishu. M/V Burak A left Istanbul on 19th August 2011 and is carrying 5.000 tons of humanitarian aid for Somali. Among the cargo are 8 full equipped ambulances, 1 forklift, 5 jeeps, 6 generators, 500 tents, 5000 blankets and 4.500 tons of food and medical supplies.

TCG Gediz will escort M/V Burak A, to Mogadishu port and will provide security during the unloading of the humanitarian aid. After escorting the merchant ship away from dangerous waters she will join the CTF-151.

It was not made public how long the frigate will stay in Gulf of Aden but by judging older deployments to the region I assume it will not shorter than 3 months.

Currently both ships are in the Mediterranean, heading to Port Said.

%d bloggers like this: