Norwegian Minister of Defence Anne-Grete Strøm-Erichsen aboard HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen

From NATO Maritime Command:  Yesterday, Norwegian Minister of Defence, Anne-Grete Strøm-Erichsen, visited Operation OCEAN SHIELD flagship, HNoMS FRIDTJOF NANSEN. 

The Commander of NATO’s counter-piracy effort, Commodore Henning Amundsen, welcomed the Norwegian delegation in Djibouti, where NANSEN has been re-supplying during the weekend.

Shortly after the Minister’s arrival, the frigate cast off, once again heading for the Gulf of Aden and the Internationally Recommended Transit Corridor (IRTC). Commercial ships use the IRTC to take advantage of the naval protection offered by NATO, the EU and several international navies.

On board, the MoD received a detailed briefing about the current situation in the Indian Ocean, followed by a demonstration of the frigate’s force protection assets and boarding team. Minister Strøm-Erichsen was also given a ship tour allowing her to meet crewmembers from different departments.

“This is an excellent opportunity for the Norwegian frigate to show the Minister of Defence that we are able to fulfil our obligations to the Alliance and provide a valuable contribution, securing the important trading route through the Gulf of Aden,” said Commodore Amundsen.

On August 16, Minister Strøm-Erichsen announced that NANSEN would serve as the flagship in Operation OCEAN SHIELD, a decision celebrated by the Norwegian shipping industry. Approximately 1,000 of the 20,000 merchant vessels transiting through the Gulf of Aden each year are Norwegian.  (photo: Meek Tore/NTB)