The Iraq Navy accepted two Swift-class patrol boats from the U.S. Navy
on Aug. 13. The surface vessels would be based at Navy headquarters in Umm
Qasr and patrol the northern Gulf, Middle East Newsline reported.
"The delivery of the U.S. built Swift patrol boats 304 and 306 increases
the Iraqi Navy's capability to effectively patrol and defend their
territorial waters and critical oil infrastructure," U.S. Navy Rear Adm.
Kelvin Dixon, director of Iraq Training and Advising Mission-Navy and
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The U.S. military said the Iraq Navy has ordered 12 patrol boats from
Swiftship, located in Morgan City, La. So far, five of the 35-meter vessels
have arrived as Iraqi crews undergo training in Louisiana.
Officials said Swift, which underwent a week of tests, would be deployed
for maritime surveillance and reconnaissance as well as vessel-boarding and
search-and-seizure. They said the remaining patrol boats were expected to be
delivered to Iraq in 2012.
"The Iraqis have really done an outstanding job with the limited assets
they had," Cmdr. Quintin Bell, commanding officer of the training