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Turkey starts mass production of over 120 patrol boats

Members of the Turkish Coast Guard search for boats carrying refugees and migrants during a patrol conducted for the press on Lake Van on September 29, 2021 in Van, Turkey [Chris McGrath/Getty Images]
Members of the Turkish Coast Guard search for boats carrying refugees and migrants during a patrol conducted for the press on Lake Van on September 29, 2021 in Van, Turkey [Chris McGrath/Getty Images]

Turkey has started mass production of 122 domestically designed patrol boats to secure the country's coasts, the project's in charge said on Sunday, reports Anadolu Agency.

The boats will be supplied by the defense and shipbuilding industry to the Coast Guard Command and General Directorate of Security.

The project is run by ARES Shipyard in the southern province of Antalya.

The small naval vessels will be used to keep a check on irregular migration, smuggling, search and rescue, and maritime security operations in the "Blue Homeland."

They will be built according to Turkish Lloyd's rules (design calculations and projects of all kinds of ships, floating vessels, yachts, marine equipment), and will operate in all coastal regions of Turkey.

The ARES 35 FPB (Fast Patrol Boat), with a maximum speed of 35 knots and a range of 160 nautical miles, will be 12 metres high (over 39.3 feet).

Onur Yilmaz, who is also the planning and projects manager at ARES Shipyard, told Anadolu Agency that they successfully built first of the 122 patrol boats as part of the contract signed between their company and the Presidency of Presidential Defense Industry.

READ: Over 20,000 migrants drowned in Mediterranean since 2014

After about a year of design development activities, they started production in January, and the boat has been subjected to various tests, he said.

He added that the boat will depart from Antalya for two months to take part in operations in the Black Sea.

"Production has also started for other boats. We plan to complete the project in four years by delivering six boats every two months," he explained.

All boats will have the same features, but there could be changes in case of additional feedback, he added.

"It was designed with a high operational capability on all the coastlines of Turkey, and will prove itself by performing tasks in shallow and even deep waters (over 3.2 feet)."

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