Fighter jets aboard the French aircraft carrier FS Charles de Gaulle have been conducting airstrikes against the Daesh positions in Syria since November 2015 while the carrier itself was positioned in the Persian Gulf.
While the carrier is a powerful offensive ship it lacks armament to protect itself from attacks. That is where frigates and other ships of a carrier’s task force jump in to provide the carrier with full operational freedom.
FS Charles de Gaulle’s task force is comprised of 3.200 soldiers, two French destroyer ships and a replenishment ship, one British and one German frigate.
FGS Augsburg, the German frigate, originally sailed for EU NAVFOR’s Operation Sophia in the Mediterranean November 20 when the German government appropriated support for French forces in the Middle East. The government then redirected Augsburg from Op Sophia to make up the carrier’s task force.
The Augsburg operates, together with other ships, usually at a distance between two and ten nautical miles (approx. 4-20 km) from the carrier in order to intercept any threats the carrier might encounter.
The supporting ships clear all surface and underwater movements and keep an eye on suspicious ships and aircraft that might come close to the carrier and endanger her operations.
FS Charles de Gaulle is expected to return to its base in Toulon, France at the end of March, 2015.