March 21, 2019 (Google Translation) – After leaving the Corymbe mission in the Gulf of Guinea, the amphibious helicopter carrier Mistral , making its way to its port-base Toulon, made a stopover of a few days in Morocco and a joint training with the Moroccan Navy, before to welcome on his flight deck American aircraft.
The stopover in Agadir, the first of a French building for eight years, was an opportunity to meet the local military and civil authorities during many official activities, highlighting the Franco-Moroccan cooperation in the naval field and to radiate armies to the French community in Morocco. Many Moroccans, staff of the French Institute, the Chamber of Commerce, the Consulate, students of the French high school had the opportunity to visit the building. The Mistral also welcomed 80 young French for their day of defense and citizenship (JDC).
The vessel and its crew resumed the sea on 11 March. The Mistral joined the anti-submarine frigate Primauguet , arriving from the Azores, and the Moroccan frigate Tarik Ben Ziad to train together for half a day. The ships sailed in cooperation and conducted numerous exercises including tactical evolutions, cross-maneuvering and simulated anti-submarine warfare. This training is in addition to the recent joint operational patrols conducted in September 2018 and January 2019 off the coast of Morocco, demonstrating the close links and interoperability between our two navies.
Before crossing the Strait of Gibraltar, the sailors of the Mistral have reconfigured themselves to prepare the reception on the flight deck of two American V22 convertible aircraft. These 24-ton aircraft have the ability to perform vertical takeoffs: they can rotate their propellers at 90 ° and take off like a helicopter. They made a series of landings and takeoffs, called ” touch and go “, on PHA Mistral before joining their base in Spain.
The Mistral then resumed its route towards Toulon.
Since 1990, France deploys one to two buildings on Corymbe mission almost permanently in the Gulf of Guinea. The mission has two major objectives: to participate in the protection of French interests in the area as well and to contribute to the reduction of maritime insecurity, by helping in particular to strengthen the capacities of the Gulf’s coastal waters in the field of maritime safety, in the part of the Yaoundé process. The deployment of French vessels on a Corymbe mission completes the pre-positioned French system in West Africa (Gabon, Ivory Coast, Senegal) and participates in the maritime component of operational cooperation implemented regionally by these presence forces.