Friday, April 10, 2009

France Assumes Command of CTF 150

Focus on Defense
News from U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, U.S. 5th Fleet Combined Maritime Forces.

Focus on Defense:

MANAMA, Bahrain, April 10, 2009 -- French Navy Rear Adm. Alain Hinden assumed command of Combined Task Force (CTF) 150 from German Navy Rear Adm. Rainer Brinkmann during a Change-of-Command ceremony held April 9, in Djibouti.

The ceremony concluded the German Navy's sixth successful command of CTF 150, which conducts Maritime Security Operations (MSO) in the Gulf of Aden, Gulf of Oman, Arabian Sea, Red Sea and the Indian Ocean.

Brinkmann has commanded the task force since January, and under his leadership CTF 150 coordinated patrols throughout their area of operations (AOO) to help commercial shipping and fishing operate safely and freely in the region.

"Local mariners rely on the international navies deployed in this region," he said. "There is a common understanding among mariners which crosses boundaries and languages."

France has been part of the Combined Maritime Forces since 2001 and has commanded CTF 150 six times. They have contributed two dedicated ships to CTF 150 along with a maritime patrol squadron based in Djibouti over the past seven years. Hinden will command CTF 150 from the flagship FS Marne (A 630).

"Free and secure trade is the reason our nations operate their navies in the northern Indian Ocean - to set the conditions for a safe and secure maritime environment," said Hinden. "It is at sea that our Naval Power will continue to fight. This will be done in the spirit that has developed during more than seven years in TF150 - transparency and cooperation with neighboring nations."

CTF 150 is a multinational task force that was created to counter terrorism, prevent smuggling, create a lawful maritime order and conduct Maritime Security Operations to help develop security in the maritime environment. From security arises stability that results in global economic prosperity. The flexibility and capability of coalition forces make them well positioned to respond to any potential emergent situation. Through training opportunities with regional partners, CTF 150 enhances existing cooperative relationships which aim to support regional countries struggles against violent extremism.

(Report from a Combined Maritime Forces Public Affairs news release.)

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