The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) has deployed a task group in support of the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) counter-piracy efforts in the Gulf for the fifth time.

During its three-month deployment, the SAF task group will join the CMF counter piracy Combined Task Force (CTF) 151.

Chief of the Singapore Navy, Rear-Admiral Ng Chee Peng, (extreme right) affixing the Singapore flag insignia onto a member of the 151-strong SAF task group deployed to the Gulf of Aden. Credit: Singapore MINDEF

The SAF task group comprises the Republic of Singapore Navy’s (RSN) Formidable-class stealth frigate RSS Tenacious and a Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) Sikorsky S-70B Seahawk naval helicopter.

Colonel Cheong Kwok Chien, who leads the task group, said: “The Singapore task group is honoured to be part of the international effort to ensure a safer maritime environment for seafarers. The task group is looking forward to playing its part and I feel privileged to be working together with like-minded nations in the Gulf of Aden.

Senior Lieutenant Colonel Lim Wee Kwong, Singapore’s Senior National Representative at the CMF, highlighted importance of CMF’s role and Singapore’s contribution. He said: “Our continuous participation in CMF underscores Singapore’s commitment, as a responsible member of the international community and a maritime nation, to support international counter-piracy efforts in the Gulf of Aden.”

Officiating at a ceremony held at Changi Naval Base on 17 March, The Chief of the Singapore Navy, Rear-Admiral Ng Chee Peng, underscored the SAF’s commitment to support international counter-piracy efforts and emphasised the importance of the CMF’s mission to safeguard shipping and the freedom of navigation in the Gulf.

Family members sending off the SAF task group as RSS Tenacious slips off from Changi Naval Base.

He said, “These piracy attacks disrupt key sea lines of communication and maritime trade, as well as affect the safety of seafarers. This has a direct impact on countries such as Singapore that are dependent on maritime trade.”

The mission of CTF 151 is to disrupt piracy and armed robbery at sea and to engage with regional and other partners to build capacity and improve relevant capabilities in order to protect global maritime commerce and secure freedom of navigation.