Portuguese Navy’s Frigate D.Francisco de Almeida Sails off to Fight Piracy
Portuguese Navy’s frigate D.Francisco de Almeida left Lisbon to fight piracy near the Horn of Africa.
The frigate will join other ships of NATO’s permanent naval force taking part in the Operation Ocean Shield 2011 in the Indian Ocean.
D.Francisco de Almeida was built two years ago and commissioned into Portuguese Navy in 2010. Her crew consists of 185 mariners including 14 women. Apart from the crew, there is a special boarding party and one Lynx reconnaissance-attack helicopter with air crew and technical maintenance personnel.
The cruise will last till mid-Nov; the ship will carry out patrols in piracy-risky zone since Sept 1 till Oct 30.
Although this is not the first Portuguese Navy’s participation in anti-piracy operation off Somalia, frigate D.Francisco de Almeida and her crew will face such tasks for the fist time. According to the ship’s commanding officer, the crew has passed full-scale combat and psychological training and is fully ready to complete assigned mission.
Fifteen commandos on board the ship is a great advantage to the task group; all servicemen of the boarding party have combat experience in that region and are well aware of tactical situation in that part of Africa.
Another frigate Corte Real was the first Portuguese warship taking part in the anti-piracy operation near Somali. At that time, NATO command highly appreciated efforts of the ship’s crew.
Source: rusnavy, August 23, 2011;