Last week saw the Turkish corvette TCG Buyukada (F-512), employed in the NATO counter piracy operation Ocean Shield, conduct exercises with international naval forces from Japan, Australia, the Republic of Korea, and Oman.
“Exercising with international forces while patrolling the joint area of operations enhances our inter-operability and co-operation with our maritime partners,” said Vice Admiral Bruno Paulmier, Deputy Commander of NATO’s Allied Maritime Command. “These opportunities also prove valuable tests of the skills among these forces.”
On Sunday and Tuesday, Buyukada conducted replenishment at sea (RAS) training with the Royal Australian Navy ship HMAS Success (OR 304), a multi-product replenishment oiler.
Monday saw her exercise with the Japan Maritime Self Defence Force ship JS Harusame (D-102), an independent deployer conducting counter-piracy in the region, testing common procedures and manoeuvres between these forces. During the interaction with the JMSDF, the Commander of Deployment Surface Force for Counter Piracy Enforcement, Captain Masatoshi Kashihara, visited Buyukada and briefed on the activities of the ship in the operations area.
On Wednesday Buyukada had the opportunity of performing passing exercises (PASSEX), including manoeuvring training and formation drills with the Korean Ship Roks Dae Jo Yeong in the Arabian Sea. Buyukada Commander Lieutenant Commander Ali Tuna Baysal welcomed the Commander of the Korean Escort Task Group XVII and Commanding Officer of Roks Dae Jo Yeong Captain Sun-Woo Hwang, aboard Buyukada. Captain Sun-Woo Hwang and his contingent were briefed on Buyukada’s deployment in the region and her participation in Operation Ocean Shield. They shared their experiences in counter-piracy operations and discussed future opportunities to work together.
Thursday the crew of Buyukada conducted fire-fighting training with the Royal Omani Navy. This training is part of broader regional capacity building activities with countries in the area of operations. Fourteen Royal Omani Navy personnel observed the training, which included briefs about the fire-fighting systems, damage control and firefighting organisation of the Turkish warship and direct observation of a fire simulation on the mess decks.
“Exercising with the Australian, Japanese, Korean and Omani navies over the course of a busy week was highly beneficial for this crew, a contribution to strengthen co-operation among navies committed to counter-piracy” said Baysal. “This deployment has provided us an excellent opportunity to work together with our partners, demonstrating the flexibility we are able to reach operating side-by-side.”