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U.S. delivers more patrol boats to Iraqi navy

Special to WorldTribune.com

BAGHDAD — The U.S. Navy continues to deliver patrol boats to Iraq.

On Feb. 17, the U.S. Navy delivered two 35-meter patrol boats to the Umm
Qaser base of the Iraq Navy. Officials said marked the 10th and 11th vessels
as part of a deal to export 12 boats to the Iraq Navy.

Built by Swiftships in the USA, these high-speed, 35-metre vessels are armed with the 30mm British MSI gun.

Built by Swiftships in the USA, the high-speed, 35-meter vessels are armed with the 30mm British MSI gun.

“Together with the nine patrol boats previously delivered, these two new vessels are a significant step toward meeting Iraq’s security requirements in the northern Arabian Gulf,” Frank McCarthey, Program Executive Office ship program manager, said.

Officials said the latest vessels, called PB-310 and PB-311, underwent
trials at U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet in Bahrain. From there, the boats went to Iraq.

The vessels, designed to reach a speed of 30 knots, were manufactured by Swiftships Shipbuilders, with the U.S. Navy assigned to provide training. Swiftship, meant to accommodate a crew of 25, has been equipped with a 30mm artillery.

“The Support Ships, Boats and Craft Program Office in the U.S Navy’s PEO
Ships, is managing the acquisition of the patrol boats as a foreign military
sales case, with the final patrol boat planned for delivery later this
year,” the U.S. Navy said.

This marked the second U.S. delivery to the Iraq Navy in less than three
months. In December 2012, Iraq received two 60-meter offshore support
vessels.

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