The Vendémiaire surveillance frigate sailed on January 15 from Nouméa, for a three-month mission that will take its crew from Indonesia to South Korea through China or Guam. This deployment aims to strengthen knowledge of sensitive areas of the Western Pacific such as the South China Sea.
During the first leg of the mission, the frigate anchored in Waala Bay, Belep Islands, New Caledonia on 16 January. A delegation of the vessel led by the Commander, Commander Alexandre Blonce, went ashore to the Grand Chiefdom to meet the local tribal chiefs and make custom.
This custom of New Caledonia is a prerequisite for any exchange with the Kanak tribes. Once this gesture made with an offering, the delegation of Vendémiaire went to meet the inhabitants.
The commander assured the chiefs of tribes, the presence of the Navy for the surveillance and protection of New Caledonia and in particular in the monitoring of fishing activities. Proof in support, the commander recalled the recent interception by the Vendémiaire last November of two Vietnamese “blue boats” illegally fishing in the north of Grande-Terre.
The cooperation of the Vendémiaire with the other navies of the region is one of the essential objectives of this mission. The many operational training (refueling at sea, fire drills, tactical evolutions …) that will be conducted during this mission 2018.1 with foreign vessels will allow French sailors to observe the methods of their counterparts but also to expose their knowledge. make. In this context, where France is strongly involved in an international coalition in the Middle East, it remains essential to conduct these exercises to improve the interoperability capabilities between allies.
Based in Nouméa (New Caledonia), the Vendémiaire totals an average of 5 to 6 months of absence per year. The surveillance frigate carries out short missions in the maritime zone of New Caledonia to ensure the protection of the territory and its resources (fisheries police, joint exercises, missions of sovereignty), as well as two long deployments: a mission “South Pacific And an “Asia” mission.