UK Navy Refutes Allegations of Poor Defense Due to Lack of Deployed Warships | World Defense

UK Navy Refutes Allegations of Poor Defense Due to Lack of Deployed Warships

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UK Navy Refutes Allegations of Poor Defense Due to Lack of Deployed Warships
21.12.2017

LONDON (Sputnik) - The UK Royal Navy (RN) has various capabilities at its disposal other than frigates and destroyers, an RN spokesperson told Sputnik on Thursday, following allegations of the country's defense suffering because no major warships were deployed overseas.

On Wednesday, Vice Adm. John McAnally, national president of the Royal Naval Association, told The Times newspaper that the fact that all six of the RN's Type 45 destroyers and 12 out of 13 Type 23 frigates were in domestic ports was "unprecedented" and alarming. Other media also expressed fear that the United Kingdom might not be prepared for a potential outbreak of war.

"There is much more to the Navy than frigates and destroyers. The hugely capable RFA Mounts Bay [landing ship dock] proved her worth following Hurricane Irma, and she is still there. HMS Protector [patrol ship] provided specialist support to the search for the missing Argentine submarine San Juan, and she is still in the south Atlantic," the spokesperson said.

According to the RN, six ships are in the Persian Gulf and two are in the Mediterranean Sea. The types of ships were not specified by the Navy.

"The continuous at-sea deterrent is exactly that – continuous. We also have a frigate and patrol boat poised to operate in UK waters throughout the Christmas period – as we always do," the spokesperson said.

The Royal Navy maintained that any lull in ships' deployments was most likely due to routine maintenance and the training of additional crew.

"We do not routinely comment on the reasons for individual ships being alongside, but this could be a maintenance period [after] having returned from operations or in preparation for her next deployment," an RN spokesperson told Sputnik.

The UK Navy faced another controversy earlier this month, as the HMS Queen Elizabeth, recently formally accepted into the fleet, was found to have a problem with a shaft seal, which reportedly resulted in leakage.

An RN spokesperson told Sputnik earlier this week that the issue was not major and would not prevent the HMS Queen Elizabeth from further sea trials.

https://sputniknews.com/military/201712211060206399-uk-navy-poor-defense-warships/
 

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No Ruling the Waves for Royal Navy as Major Warships Remain Tied Up in UK Ports
20.12.2017


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For the first time in living memory, Britain has no major warships on operations anywhere in the world, it has been revealed, as one senior defense expert warns UK military might is less than half what it once was.

A combination of mechanical problems, maintenance, holiday leave and a shortage of crew manpower has resulted in all six of the UK's Type 45 destroyers — HMS Daring, HMS Dauntless, HMS Diamond, HMS Defender, HMS Dragon, and HMS Duncan — all being left tied up in Portsmouth harbor.

Similarly the navy's 13-strong fleet of Type 23 frigates are split between Portsmouth and Devonport in Plymouth to allow maintenance programs to be carried out as well as give sailors leave over the Christmas period.

The only vessel still at sea is HMS St Albans, presently on duty protecting home waters. It is scheduled to take over as the British Royal Navy's flagship when HMS Ocean, a helicopter carrier, goes out of service early in 2018.

In an interview, Michael O'Hanlon, a senior fellow in foreign policy at The Brookings Institution, where he specializes in U.S defense strategy and use of military force, admitted the situation was "a bit of an aberration.
"But it is true overall, UK military strength is probably less than half of what it once was, say in the 1980s," he told Sputnik.

Unprecedented
Vice-Admiral John McAnally, national president of the Royal Naval Association, described the absence of deployed frigates and destroyers as being unprecedented. He blamed stringent cuts to the defense budget by successive UK governments for the embarrassing situation.

In an interview, he told The Times: "This is an indication that the navy is too small. I am distressed and alarmed. I do not see that it is easily remedied. The only answer is an increase in the defense budget. It is too small to meet what government want the armed forces to do."
Oh Dear..HMS Queen Elizabeth, Britain's new £3.1bn aircraft carrier, has a leak less than a month after the warship was accepted into the Royal Navy fleet…the UK vanity project! Hey @murdo_fraser How bad is this! NOT SO Strong & Stable now eh!https://t.co/BeAMh9vFG1

Gulf Role
Normally there is, at least, one frigate or destroyer deployed to the Gulf on a permanent basis, but HMS Diamond which was due to take up that role, returned to Portsmouth after suffering a propeller fault.

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HMS Duncan

Naval chiefs are now prepared to send HMS Duncan to fill this void, although it will take part also in a NATO role in the Mediterranean at the beginning on the new year.

A Ministry of Defense spokesman said: "The Royal Navy is deployed globally on operations and will be protecting our national interests throughout Christmas and the new year."

This latest plight to hit the UK navy comes just days after it was revealed Britain's newest and most expensive warship, HMS Queen Elizabeth, has been hit by technical problems, namely a leak around one of its two propellers during sea trials. It's not expected to be commissioned for at least another three years.
Let’s keep things in perspective:
It’s a 65,000 tonne ship taking on a bath tub of water every hr. Not uncommon with big ships-will be fixed https://t.co/wEdag4nyDw

Tobias Ellwood, the veterans minister, took to social media to reassure people over the problem on board the warship, built at a cost of £3.1 billion (US$4.15 billion). He posted on Twitter: "Let's keep things in perspective. It's a 65,000 tonne ship taking on a bathtub of water every hour. Not uncommon with big ships — will be fixed."

Gavin Williamson, Britain's Defense Secretary, insisted also the cost of the repair will not be met by the British taxpayer but by the companies involved in constructing the aircraft carrier.

https://sptnkne.ws/gq6T
 
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