Category Archives: Combined Maritime Forces

Lieutenant Commander Benjamin Power Royal Navy met his namesake Lieutenant Benjamin Power Royal Australian Navy whilst both were serving in the Indian Ocean.

The meeting of the two Powers took place whilst both were operating under direct support to Combined Task Force 150. Lieutenant Commander Ben Power Principal Warfare Officer (PWO) from HMS St Albans met up with Lieutenant Ben Power, also a PWO from Her Majesty’s Australian Ship Melbourne. The unlikely coincidence took place when the two ships took the opportunity to exchange members of each other’s crews for a few hours to see how the ships differ.

Lt Ben Power RAN and Lt Cdr Ben Power RN on board HMS St Albans – Photo Lt Cdr G Whyte RN.

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The Japanese ship JS Suzunami, working for Combined Task Force (CTF) 151, recently undertook a dramatic medical emergency rescue at sea.

A medical emergency distress call was received from the MV Hawassan, which was transiting through the Indian Ocean. One of the crew members from India was experiencing severe chest pains and having difficulty breathing. Combined Maritime Forces (CMF), based in Bahrain, immediately coordinated a response to dispatch JS Suzunami to meet up with the MV Hawassa and offer medical assistance.

The Japanese SH-60K aircraft during the medical emergency on board MV Hawassa

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The multi-national Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) has reached an impressive milestone and seized in excess of eight tonnes of heroin since January 2013. This recent triumph confirms CMF as one of the most successful maritime security forces in the world.

The latest seizure was made by Her Majesty’s Australian Ship (HMAS) Melbourne and was the fourth drugs haul of their deployment. The Boxing Day discovery on a small vessel, known as a dhow, yielded 118 kilograms of high-grade heroin with an estimated value of US$ 82.8 million.* Once a thorough search of the dhow was completed by the ship’s boarding team the illegal narcotics were transferred to HMAS Melbourne for analysis and then destruction at sea.

HMAS Melbourne Narcotics seizure
HMAS Melbourne Ship’s Company load onboard an illegal cargo of narcotics. HMAS Melbourne intercepted the fishing vessel in the Indian Ocean and a subsequent search of the vessel revealed over 118 kilograms of high-grade heroin valued at AUD$108.8 million.

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On 21 December 2015 command of Combined Task Force 151 (CTF 151) passed from the Turkish Navy under the command of Rear Admiral Ayhan Bay to Commodore Zahid Ilyas SI(M) S Bt of the Pakistan Navy.

Commodore Zahid Ilyas, incoming Commander CTF 151

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The Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) have continued their success against illegal narcotics and made another seizure of heroin off the coast of East Africa. This latest haul of 216 kilograms of high purity heroin has an estimated value of approximately US$148 million.

Operation Manitou
HMAS Melbourne intercepts a fishing vessel suspected of smuggling illegal narcotics. A subsequent search of the vessel revealed over 216 kilograms of high-grade heroin

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