US Navy press release
The Royal Saudi Navy Western Fleet, concentrated in the Red Sea, is now contributing to IMSC missions near the Bab al-Mandeb Strait as HMS Al Jubail (828) conducts patrols in support. Its Eastern Fleet has been operating with IMSC since 2019, when Saudi Arabia joined the nine-member coalition.
“As the Western Fleet joins with IMSC, we are able to bring reassurance to our maritime industry partners as they transit the Bab al-Mandeb Strait into the Red Sea,” said United Kingdom Royal Navy Commodore Ben Aldous, commander of IMSC and Coalition Task Force (CTF) Sentinel, the operational arm of the maritime partnership.
IMSC was formed in July 2019 in response to increased threats to freedom of navigation for merchant mariners transiting international waters in the Middle East. CTF Sentinel was established four months later to deter state-sponsored malign activity and reassure the merchant shipping industry in the Strait of Hormuz and Bab al-Mandeb.
Approximately 17,000 merchant ships transit through Bab al-Mandeb into the Red Sea annually.
“The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Western Fleet goes a long way to enhancing maritime security in this well transited region.”
RN Commodore Ben Aldous, Commander of IMSC and Coalition Task Force (CTF) Sentinel
The multinational coalition is headquartered in Bahrain with U.S. 5th Fleet and includes Albania, Bahrain, Estonia, Lithuania, Romania, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and the United States.
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Naval News Comments
Al Jubail is the first corvette built by Navantia in the Avante 2200 program. It has a length of 104 meters, a beam of 14 and will be able to transport a total of 102 people including crew and passengers.
The design of the corvette is of the latest generation, maximizing the participation of Navantia by incorporating its own products, such as the CATIZ Combat System, the HERMESYS Integrated Communications System, the DORNA Firing Direction, the Integrated Platform Control System and the MINERVA Integrated Bridge, together with other equipment developed by Navantia under license, such as the MTU Engines or the RENK Reduction Gearboxes.
This program, whose last vessel must be delivered in 2024, includes, in addition to construction, Life Cycle Support for five years, from the delivery of the first vessel, with an option for another five years. On the other hand, the contract also includes the supply of several services such as Integrated Logistic Support, Operational and Maintenance Training, Supply of Training and Education Centers for the Combat System and Platform Control System of the ships, the Life Cycle Support previously mentioned, and the systems for the maintenance of the ships in the Jeddah Naval Base.