Leader to naval forces: Welcome home

May 20, 2023 - 20:56
Navy plans to send flotilla to Antarctica soon

TEHRAN- In a message on Saturday, Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei, Leader of the Islamic Revolution, warmly welcomed naval forces on the arrival of the Iranian Navy’s 86th flotilla of warships to home.

The flotilla on Saturday moored to the southern port city of Bandar Abbas after a round-the-world voyage as part of Tehran’s enterprise to widen its nautical presence in high seas.

Navy Commander Rear Admiral Shahram Irani landed on the deck of the Makran warship with a helicopter on Saturday afternoon to welcome the commanders and staff of the 86th flotilla on their historic success. 

Iran’s 86th Naval Fleet, which included the home-built Dena destroyer, came home on Wednesday after the first round of the world in a mission dubbed “360-Degree”.

The flotilla completed a lengthy cruise around the world and sailed across the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans without needing assistance from land for the first time in Iran’s naval history.

On September 20, 2022, it departed from Bandar Abbas, a port city on the Persian Gulf. It finally anchored at Oman’s Salalah harbor on the 236th day of its journey.

The flotilla traveled 63,000 kilometers and crossed the equator four times.

“A unique and strategic honor”

In a statement on Friday, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian lauded the homecoming of 86th flotilla of warships after sailing around the globe as part of the nation’s ambitions to increase its naval presence in open seas. 

“The successful mission of the 86th flotilla of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army in navigating the waters around the world, with the all-Iranian destroyer Dena and the Makran forward base ship, is a unique and strategic honor,” Amir Abdollahian stated. 

The top Iranian diplomat went on to add, “I congratulate the great success to the Leader of the Islamic Revolution, the great nation of Iran, the dedicated and zealous armed forces, especially the Navy, and the command and personnel of the 86th Fleet of the Islamic Republic of Iran.”

“The operation, along with the long and professional navigation of international seas, oceans, and straits showed the parity of the authority and maritime power of dear Iran with the world powers in the open waters of the world,” the statement stressed. 

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman said on Wednesday that the fleet earned another award at the international level by undertaking a lengthy journey around the globe.

In a post on his Twitter account, Kanaani said the flotilla brought about another honor on the international stage for the first time in the country’s history.

On May 14, the 86th flotilla of warships, which had already traveled further than any other Iranian flotilla in international seas, berthed at Salalah, the port city of Oman.

The Dena destroyer and Makran forward base ship are part of the Iranian flotilla.

The 86th flotilla berthed at Brazil’s southeastern port city of Rio de Janeiro in February.

Dena is a Mowj-class warship that joined the Iranian Navy in June 2021.

The military vessel is outfitted with anti-ship cruise missiles, torpedoes and naval cannons.

Makran, a forward base ship weighing 121,000 tons, is the other vessel in the flotilla.

The oil tanker that was converted into a warship is used to support the combat vessels logistically and can carry five helicopters.

The Iranian Navy has established three ocean commands to oversee naval missions to the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans.

Iran to send flotilla to Antarctic soon

In the near future, a flotilla from the Iranian Navy will be sent to the Antarctic.

The news that the Navy intends to send a flotilla to Antarctic comes just as the 86th flotilla returned home. 

One of the primary objectives of the recent operation carried out by the 86th flotilla appears to have been sending Iranian warships to the Antarctic.

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