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Turkish frigate docks in Israel for the first time since long time ago.

| 2022

According to information published by CGTN on September 5, 2022, the Turkish Barbaros class frigate Kemalreis docked in Israel's northern port city of Haifa, the first warship to dock in Israel for more than a decade.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Barbaros class frigate Kemalreis at Haifa port, Israel. (Picture source: Turkish Embassy of Tel Aviv)

TCG Kemalreis (F-247) is a Barbaros-class frigate of the Turkish Navy. Kemalreis was launched on 22 July 1998 by Gölcük Naval Shipyard in Kocaeli and commissioned on 8 June 2000.

Barbaros-class frigates were designed in Germany and are part of the MEKO group of modular warships, in this case the MEKO 200 design. Two ships were built in Germany and two in Turkey with German assistance. They are larger than the previous Yavuz-class frigates and are also faster due to using CODOG machinery rather than pure diesels.

The first two vessels (F-244 and F-245) are defined as the Barbaros class (MEKO 200 TN Track II-A) while the last two vessels (F-246 and F-247) are defined as the Salih Reis class (MEKO 200 TN Track II-B) by the Turkish Navy.

Salih Reis subclass ships are built with 8-cell Mk. 41 VLS and longer than Barbaros class vessels to accommodate 16-cell Mk. 41 VLS upgrade in the future while Barbaros-class vessels built with Mk.29 Sea Sparrow launchers that planned to be replaced by 8-cell Mk. 41 VLS.

Barbaros class vessels (F-244, F-245) have received an 8-cell Mk41 vertical launcher system (VLS) module, which replaced the obsolete Mk.29 Sea Sparrow launcher, while Salihreis class vessels (F-246, F-247) have received a second 8-cell Mk 41 VLS module which brings the total number of cells to 16. Additionally, the old AWS-9 3D air search radars in all 4 vessels has been replaced by modern Thales SMART-S Mk2 3D radars.

The mid-life modernization program projects to double the number of anti-ship missiles that vessel is equipped with while also replacing it by locally designed and produced Atmaca anti-ship missiles, substitution of the Oerlikon Sea Zenith CIWS systems with 1 Phalanx and 1 Aselsan Gokdeniz CIWS, change the existing TACTICOS combat management system with Havelsan "B-SYS Combat Management System" and adopt a 127mm main gun to the frigates.

Finally against asymmetric threats that the vessels may face 2x2 L/UMTAS launchers are planned to be integrated to the frigates.

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