The European Union Naval Force’s (EU NAVFOR) Italian flagship, ITS Virginio Fasan (F591) multi-purpose frigate has conducted combined exercises with the Royal Navy of Oman vessel, RNOV Al Shinas in Muscat, Oman.
During the meeting, the crews of both ships practiced boarding operations and conducted a casualty winching exercise using Virginio Fasan’s SH-90 helicopter. With a capacity to take up to 20 troops, or 12 stretchers, the SH-90 is an ideal helicopter for maritime operations.
In addition to this the two warships took part in exercises known as a PASSEX which requires the warships to manoeuvre around each other in a safe manner.
EU NAVFOR operates in the region to repress piracy and armed robbery and provides protection for the UN’s World Food Programme shipping to Somalia.
Training such as this enables aviation and naval teams from different nations to work together and strengthen cooperation at sea, helping to reduce the threat posed by piracy off the coast of Somalia.
RNOV Al Shinas (Z21) is an Al-Ofouq-class patrol vessel of Royal Navy of Oman built by ST Marine of Singapore. The Al-Ofouq-class is based on the 75m variant of the 55m Fearless-class patrol vessel currently used by the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN).
ITS Virginio Fasan (F 591) is the first Bergamini-class anti-submarine warfare (ASW) frigate of the Italian Navy. They are the Italian version of the Franco-Italian FREMM multipurpose frigate.