France officially handed over a new corvette to the Egyptian navy in a ceremony at Lorient Port in Brittany on Friday, Anadolu has reported. This is the first of four Gowind 2500-class corvettes to be delivered to Egypt.
Vice-Admiral Ahmed Khaled raised the Egyptian flag on Al-Fateh; it joins the fleet as part of a deal agreed last year which includes three other ships to be built in Alexandria with French assistance. Able to hunt and destroy submarines, the warship is capable of carrying out multiple tasks, such as securing maritime transport lines and guarding other ships and ports. The corvette has a range of 3,700 nautical miles at 15 knots and carries a crew of 80.
Since the coup which brought Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi to power in 2013, relations between Cairo and Paris have been characterised by several major weapons procurement deals. An Egyptian military official pointed out during the ceremony that France and Egypt have a long history of partnership and military cooperation.