The new patrol boats arrived in the Ivory Coast capital of Abidjan on Wednesday (25 October), delivered by a contingent from the French Navy.
GV & LV Abidjan Port with new patrol boats passing visiting French Naval flotilla. (3 SHOTS)
LV & SV Two patrol boats (L'Ardent and L'Intrepide) approaching quayside. (3 SHOTS)
SV Crewmen on one boat.
SV Radar and superstructure.
SV & CU French and Ivory Coast Navy personnel leaving boats and talking on quayside. (2 SHOTS)
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Background: The new patrol boats arrived in the Ivory Coast capital of Abidjan on Wednesday (25 October), delivered by a contingent from the French Navy. The French-made boats, named 'L'Ardent' and L'Intrepide', were officially handed over to the Ivory Coast government on the eighth of October before making the voyage to their home berth.
SYNOPSIS: Abidjan is the most important sea port in French-speaking Africa, serving as a maritime outlet, not only for the Ivory Coast, but also for Mali, Upper Volta and Niger. The new boats double the naval patrol capacity of the Ivory Coast. All four are equipped with the latest radar equipment.
The new boats -- to be used for both defence and for surveying coastal waters -- are part of a government plan to build a well-equipped navy to defend the Ivory Coast's economic interests in the marine industry.
The government intends eventually to organise its small navy into two coastal patrol squadrons.
Each boat carried a crew of nineteen, who are trained in the use of the most sophisticated navigational equipment. Their craft are classed as large patrol boats -- forty-one metres (44.8 yards) long, six metres (6.5 yards) wide, with two diesel engines generating four thousand horsepower for a top speed of twenty-eight knots. The Ivory Coast's Navy Minister, Monsieur Lamine Fadika said they would strengthen the fleet's security and independence.