HMS Kent, a frigate part of HMS Queen Elizabeth’s Carrier Strike Group, was welcomed by the Bangladesh Navy.

As a representation of the ‘Indo-Pacific tilt’ in the UK’s foreign policy, the Carrier Strike Group made its maiden deployment in May 2021 and has conducted operations and engagements in the Mediterranean and the Indo-Pacific.

The Strike group will travel over 26,000 nautical miles from the Mediterranean to the Red Sea, from the Gulf of Aden to the Arabian Sea, and from the Indian Ocean to the Philippine Sea, engaging with 40 countries. This deployment will end in December 2021.

Besides HMS Kent, the Strike Group comprises aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth, Type 45 destroyers HMS Defender and HMS Diamond (although this ship has had recent issues), Type 23 anti-submarine frigate HMS Richmond, and tanker and storage ships Fort Victoria and RFA Tidespring. In Addition, there’s an Astute class submarine, an American destroyer and a Dutch frigate.

According to the Ministry of Defence here, on the morning of 14 October, type 23 frigate HMS Kent of the UK’s Carrier Strike Group deployment (CSG21) sailed to Bangladesh, arriving at the naval base in Chattogram.

“The visit will celebrate the Golden Jubilee of Bangladesh’s independence and highlight the historic bilateral defence connections and people-to people relationships between the UK and Bangladesh. This year, with the spirit of Brit Bangla Bondhon, the UK is demonstrating the depth and significance of UK-Bangla ties through its commitment to engage more with Bangladesh as a partner of sustainable peace and growth.

The deployment of HMS Kent, as part of the Carrier Strike Group, highlights the UK’s commitment to defence cooperation and to an open and resilient international order in which open societies and economies continue to flourish and the benefits of prosperity are shared through trade and global growth. During the visit, HMS Kent will engage in a series of events with the Bangladesh Navy and the local administration in Chattogram to maximise bilateral relations benefitting both countries’ military, trade and political alliances.”

Commanding Officer of HMS Kent Commander Matt Sykes said:

“We are hugely grateful to the Government of Bangladesh and the Bangladesh Navy for their support for HMS Kent’s visit. Bangladesh’s inclusion in the Carrier Strike Group deployment is very much a demonstration of the deep and longstanding UK-Bangladesh relationship.”

British High Commissioner HE Robert Chatterton Dickson said:

“I am delighted that HMS Kent, as part of the UK Carrier Strike Group, has been able to visit Bangladesh at such an important time in the country’s history. Bangladesh’s golden jubilee celebrations provide a welcome opportunity to reflect on the country’s remarkable achievements since independence. I extend my sincere gratitude to the Bangladesh Navy for welcoming the Royal Navy today. This builds on a long history of defence cooperation that the UK is extremely proud of; we are committed to deepening our cooperation as a key part of the enduring relationship between our two countries.”

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Gunbuster
Gunbuster
22 days ago

It really is a carp run ashore.
I am guessing that HMS Kents CO is the junior with regards to the other COs so drew the short straw!

expat
expat
22 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

I think we’re fishing for defence orders from Bangladesh, I know Eurofighter has been talked about by Bangladesh officials in recent weeks, perhaps well push T31e 🙂

Pete
Pete
21 days ago
Reply to  expat

Tough in Bangladesh. .Chinese have been heavily supporting the Bangladeshis in recent years and the Bangladeshis like having friends that can regionally counter India. Hope it comes off but would be surprised.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
21 days ago
Reply to  expat

The UK sold them the old Island boats. T31 would be a good fit for them.

expat
expat
21 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Perhaps we could do a loan and part fund from ODA budget after all the objectives of ODA(from government website) are as below the last 3 seem relevant to supplying defence equipment:)

The IR set out a strategic framework to run to 2025, grouped under four overarching strategic objectives:

  • Sustaining strategic advantage through science and technology.
  • Shaping the open international order of the future.
  • Strengthening security and defence at home and overseas.
  • Building resilience at home and overseas.
Last edited 21 days ago by expat
David
David
20 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

More likely old T23s………

Propellerman
22 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

i can vouch for that – there are short straws and there are even shorter ones with a strong whiff of excrement about them – other than the cigar bar at the Raddisson, i cannot think of abslutely anywhere to grab a cold one.

Pete
Pete
21 days ago
Reply to  Propellerman

Local golf clubs in Bangladesh tend to be owned or run by snr military types. Can certainly get cold ones in abundance at some of those GC’s. Kurmatola in Dhaka was the best of them but pretty sure Bhatiary GC in Chittagong offers the odd Heineken…or it used to.

James
James
20 days ago
Reply to  Pete

Yeah it was still doing Heineken in 2019 when I visited.

The yacht club outside of Chittagong also has a bar.

ATH
ATH
22 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

It may well not matter to the crew. There have been few port visits where the crew have been allowed any time ashore on this trip.

David Barry
David Barry
22 days ago

Said it once, twice, thrice, CSG visiting Sri Lanka would bring a lot of hope, to a lot of people.

David Steeper
David Steeper
22 days ago
Reply to  David Barry

Unfortunately none of them in Govt there. China can offer them cough cough ‘stuff’ our laws would never allow.

Last edited 22 days ago by David Steeper
Tomartyr
Tomartyr
22 days ago
Reply to  David Barry

Would we need to ask China’s permission to use their port, or are there others suitable?

David Barry
David Barry
22 days ago
Reply to  Tomartyr

Colombo could accommodate but Hambanthota is a commercial Chinese owned port.

Not sure if Trimcomalee could take the carrier – @gunbuster?

mo
mo
22 days ago

as im a person with bangladeshi parents and heritage {born and brought in the uk}, we are considering to buy eurofighter on the basis we can aquire vessel of british design , like the river opv and type 31e , the other option is fremm with rafales from france but im pretty sure we will go for the british option as its alot cheaper for a poor country like bangladesh

David Steeper
David Steeper
21 days ago
Reply to  mo

Hope your right. Strong ties between us both cultural and military.

JOHNT
JOHNT
21 days ago

I remember a documentary a good few years ago about a RN ship and it visited Bangladesh during the program the water intake filters that normally last 3 months were clogging up every 2 days due to the pollution from all the untreated sewage flowing out of Bangladesh.

Pete
Pete
21 days ago
Reply to  JOHNT

Yep. Can vouch for that …downstream of Dhaka is not very pleasant. Upstream is ok…

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
21 days ago
Reply to  JOHNT

Yep I was on that ship at the time …Bulwark doing Taurus 09. I am in some of the shots …the loon somersaulting off the Crossing the Line stage into the pool…yep that was me… Lots of dead bodies, human and animal, floating around in the coastal water which was brown and stinking. The RM with some RN attached landed for an exercise and the locals thought it was the UN invading to save the country. The thing the locals wanted was plastic water bottles, not for the contents, they actually make excellent fishing floats. The water wets your whistle… Read more »

Last edited 21 days ago by Gunbuster
Pete
Pete
21 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Indeed GB I did a few years in Bangladesh. Water bottles…only country I’ve been in where you pay a few extra Takka to buy the bottles that say ‘Guaranteed Arsenic Free’. Many of the aquifers were naturally contaminated. If you have 10 minutes google Commodore A W Chowdhury…..fascinating story during independence war in 1971. Have met him many times.