US hands over naval ship

REF:  The United States has officially handed over a naval ship to Bangladesh in a reflagging ceremony in California.

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According to a media release, the US Coast Guard officially decommissioned ‘Cutter Jarvis’ and transferred it to the Bangladesh Navy after renaming it as ‘BNS Somudro Joy’, in a ceremony at Coast Guard Island in Alameda, California on Thursday local time.

The 378-foot high endurance cutter homeported in Alameda is now the largest ship in the Navy fleet.

US Pacific Area Commander Vice Admiral Paul F Zukunft and Bangladesh’s Chief of Naval Staff Vice Admiral Muhammad Farid Habib were present during the formal handover.

The BNS Somudro Joy will depart for Bangladesh later this year. A 20-member Bangladesh naval team had arrived in Alameda for the ceremony.

US officials had earlier said the ship would be gifted as part of its keenness to develop a stronger naval relationship for the maritime ‘peace and stability’ in the Asia-Pacific region.

US Ambassador to Dhaka Dan Mozena had said it would take several months of continued outfitting of the vessel and training of the crew after the transfer of the ship to Bangladesh Navy.

The ‘Jarvis’ sailed in the Pacific and served the US since 1972. It was decommissioned in October last year.

Training is underway for Bangladeshi naval officials in US to run the ship.

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