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French Navy Mistral-class LHD Tonnerre visits Singapore.

| 2021

According to information published by the French embassy of Singapore on May 28, 2021, French Landing Helicopter Dock (LHD), Tonnerre arrived in Singapore and will be docking at the Changi Naval Base for two days.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 French Navy Mistral-class LHD Tonnerre at the Changi Naval Base, Singapore (Picture source: French embassy of Singapore)

This is part of an annual deployment undertaken by the French Navy in the framework of Mission Jeanne D’Arc 2021. This 5-month deployment which started in February 2021 aims at training cadet officers from the French Navy and conducting operational large-scale exercises with the navies of the partner countries in the Indo-Pacific area including Singapore.

This year, the naval group was deployed to areas of strategic interest including the Mediterranean Sea, the Red Sea, the Indian and Pacific Oceans via the South China Sea. In Asia-Pacific, the task group of Mission Jeanne d’Arc took part in joint exercises such as La Pérouse or ARC21, an important amphibious exercise held in Japan with the Japanese, Australian and American forces, coordinated patrols with Australia as well as replenishments at sea with the United States and Japan.

On 27 May, LHD Tonnerre conducted a passage exercise (PASSEX) with the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) and Air Force (RSAF). This joint exercise showcased the interoperability of both countries’ armed forces.

Tonnerre is the second of three Mistral-class LHD of the French Navy. It was launched in July 2005 and commissioned in December 2006. Designed by Naval Group, Mistral BPC (Bâtiment de Projection et de Commandment) LHD is a multi-mission 21,500t amphibious assault, command and power projection ship. Mistral-class vessels are capable to accommodate and deploy 16 transport or attack helicopters, four landing crafts, up to 70 vehicles or 13 main battle tanks. They have accommodations for 450 to 700 troops.

A landing helicopter dock (LHD) is a multipurpose amphibious assault ship which is capable of operating helicopters and has a well deck.

LHD vessels are built with a full flight deck similar in appearance to an aircraft carrier to operate utility and attack helicopters.

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