HMS Defender sailed from Portsmouth yesterday (June 2) on her maiden deployment to the Middle East where she will carry out maritime security operations.
The Type 45 destroyer will police busy shipping lanes in the Indian Ocean, conducting security and counter piracy operations. Later she will head to the Gulf to contribute to the UK’s long-standing commitment to security in the region.
Defender is the fifth of the Royal Navy’s six new Type 45s. Built by BAE Systems on the Clyde, she was commissioned into the Navy’s fleet in March 2013.
Since then the ship and her 200 sailors have undergone intensive sea trials off the UK coast.
Her Commanding Officer, Commander Phil Nash, said: “I am immensely proud of my ship’s company and all they have achieved to prepare HMS Defender for this first deployment.
“Having been through intense training we are ready for a challenging deployment as part of the Royal Navy’s standing commitment in the Middle East.
“We will provide reassurance to the UK’s allies in the region, whilst conducting maritime security and counter-piracy patrols.
“I would like to pay tribute to our families who provide the support that allows us to achieve such milestones as this.
“We leave our families, friends and loved ones behind with some sadness, but we deploy with confidence in Defender’s ability to meet any operational tasking.”
HMS Defender is primarily designed for air defence but is able to conduct a multitude of tasks such as air surveillance, anti-submarine operations, counter piracy, peacekeeping or humanitarian missions.
Press Release, June 03, 2014