UK Navy Warships Head Home as Libyan Mission Ends

UK Navy Warships Head Home as Libyan Mission Mission Ends

Today sees the conclusion of the British military’s commitment to operations off Libya, as ships, aircraft and personnel begin the long journey homewards.

Since the start of NATO’s Operation Unified Protector on March 19 2011, British forces have been endeavouring to support and protect the Libyan people from the effects of Gaddafi’s harsh regime.

Operation Ellamy – the British name for the UK’s contribution to the operation – has seen at its peak 2,300 personnel, 32 aircraft and four ships committed to the task.

The First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir Mark Stanhope, sent out to all personnel within the Naval Service a message of thanks.

He said: “For over eight months, the Royal Navy and Royal Fleet Auxiliary have been deployed on active service in support of the Libyan people under both national and NATO command.

“The operational effect achieved by our maritime forces has been significant and, working alongside our sister Services and coalition partners, you have once again demonstrated the flexibility, agility and fighting power that are the trademarks of the Fleet.”

The admiral praised the Service for being able to generate and sustain 17 platforms, with over 3,100 people including ships’ companies, embarked forces and aircrews, in the midst of the Royal Marines heavy commitment to the lead in Herrick 14.

He outlined the range of roles that had been carried out by the men and women of the RN, RFA and RM in tasks as diverse as evacuating civilians, supporting air operations to mine clearance and delivering humanitarian aid.

He added: “In all these areas you have excelled and, as I am, you should be very proud of what you have achieved.”

Defence Secretary Philip Hammond said: “Our armed forces can be immensely proud that their hard work has assured the liberty of the Libyan people. This is a job well done.”

Source: royalnavy, November 02, 2011