U.K.’s largest carrier strike group is sailing to the South China Sea

U.K.’s largest carrier strike group is sailing to the South China Sea

 


They are coming!!!

Not since the Falkland war of 1982, the United Kingdom is sending its largest contingent of warships to the waters far away from its homeport.

The UK’s largest carrier strike group will depart May 18 and will arrive in the South China Sea the next month.

RFA Tideforce (lead), HMS Northumberland (her right), USS Truxton (her far right), HMS Dragon (her left), USS Philippine Sea (her far left) with HMS Queen Elizabeth at the rear during Exercise Westlant 19. (UK MOD) (Photo credit to owner)


The deployment will last 28 weeks and will cover visits to 40 countries. 

The Ministry of Defence described the deployment as the “largest concentration of maritime and air power to leave the U.K. in a generation.”

According to the U.K. government, the massive strike group composed of carriers, destroyers, submarines, cruisers, and a number of aircraft from the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force will be “a truly global deployment, from the North Atlantic to the Indo-Pacific.”

 

A first for UK’s most powerful and largest ship

 

The mission to sail to the Pacific will be the maiden mission or the first operational deployment of UK’s brand new aircraft carrier, the HMS Queen Elizabeth, which is the Royal Navy’s largest and most powerful warship ever built. It cost P213 billion (£3.2 billion) to build. 

The HMS Queen Elizabeth will be armed to the teeth because it will carry at least 18 F-35B stealth fighters (Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II), a fifth-generation fighter considered the most advanced in the world. The price tag for each F-35B stealth fighter is a staggering P3.86 billion ($80 million). 

The carrier strike group will also include missile-guided destroyers HMS Defender and HMS Diamond, anti-submarine frigates HMS Kent and HMS Richmond, and logistical naval ships HMS Tidespring and HMS Fort Victoria. The carrier strike group will be escorted by an  Astute-class nuclear submarine, the most advanced nuclear-powered submarine in service with the Royal Navy.

 

Its about time!

 

The British project its naval might following the world’s nuclear powers who have done their respective freedom of navigation and military exercises in the South China Sea (SCS); US, France, Canada. Japan will also take part in the maritime exercises with the United Kingdom.

The warships from the Royal Navy will also take advantage of the mission to conduct exercises with the members of the Five Powers Defense Agreements—Australia, U.K., Malaysia, New Zealand, and Singapore. 

 

Projection of Power and Influence.

 

British Prime Defense Sevetary Ben Wallace released  a statement about why the UK is deploying on this side of the planet with its largest contingent of warship.

“When our carrier strike group sets sail next month, it will be flying the flag for Global Britain— projecting our influence, signaling our power, engaging with our friends and reaffirming our commitment to addressing the security challenges of today and tomorrow.

“The entire nation can be proud of the dedicated men and women who for more than six months will demonstrate to the world that the UK is not stepping back but sailing forth to play an active role in shaping the international system of the 21st century,” said Wallace.

Commodore Steve Moorhouse, the Royal Navy’s commander of the carrier strike group, also released a statement“As our nation redefines its place in the world post-Brexit, it is the natural embodiment of the government’s ‘Global Britain’ agenda,” he said. “And against a backdrop of growing instability and competition, it reflects the United Kingdom’s continued commitment to global security.”

 

 

 

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