French Navy ship « LHD Mistral » visits Ghana
French Navy ship “LHD (Landing Helicopter Deck, BPC in French) Mistral” arrived at Tema Harbour on Thursday 22th of October. It will cast off on Tuesday, 27th of October. The purpose of the visit is to reinforce the existing ties between the French Navy and the Ghanaian naval forces.
Under command of Captain Benoit du Guibert since September 2013, the French Landing Helicopter Deck (LHD) “Mistral” has a staff of 25 officers, 131 petty officers and 62 seamen.
The landing helicopter decks (LHD) of the « Mistral » class were conceived to answer as best as possible to operational requirements. Their capacities reinforce significantly the French and European means in the areas of force projection and both inter-army and inter-allies commandment at sea. It can be involved in a wide variety of operations, such as population rescue interventions, helicopter or amphibious operations, flagship and command of a force, troops and freight transportation, and health support.
On the occasion of this routine port call, interactions between Ghana navy and French Navy might also be organized in the framework of the Nemo multilateral exercise, which aims to develop the coordination between the main Navies in the area of the Gulf of Guinea. The ambition of this exercise is to enable and facilitate the sharing of information, the monitoring of suspicious activities and the coordination of the appropriate actions.
At the occasion of a press interaction with journalists and a ship visit, the Ambassador of France to Ghana Mr François Pujolas recalled that both countries are developing stronger ties, as was reaffirmed by President Mahama and President Hollande during their last meeting in Paris October 5th. “Cooperation in the field of defence and security is a key priority”, stated the Ambassador. He cited as a very good example regional cooperation to face the challenges of maritime security in the Gulf of Guinea.