Last FACs from CMN delivered to Kuwait
The French shipbuilder Constructions Mecaniques de Normandie (CMN) has handed over to Kuwait the Al Yarmouk and the Garoh, the last two of eight 42-meter fast attack craft (FACs) ordered in 1995. The eight vessels, built at a cost of $475 million, are intended to replace the German– built FACs lost during the Iraqi occupation of Kuwait in 1990 and the Gulf War in 1991.
The Um Al Maradim-class FACs, which were built to CMN’s P-37BRL design, will be used for surveillance and coastal defense. The vessels are armed with two twin launchers for Matra BAe Dynamics-built Sea Skua surface-to-surface missiles mounted on the fantail. The Sea Skua-adapted from a helicopter-launched missile-possesses a semi-active radar homing capability, a speed of Mach 0.9, and a range of more than nine miles. It also is combat-proven, having seen action in the Falklands in 1982 and in the Battle of Bubiyan Channel in 1991.
Before departing for Kuwait, the last two craft-delivered in a 7 June ceremony in Cherbourg-carried out eight weeks of training with support from the shipyard and the French Navy. The first four boats, Um Al Maradim, Failaka, Mascan, and Ouha, were handed over in July last year. The fifth and sixth, Al Ahmadi and Al Fahaheel, were handed over at the end of last year.
Copyright Navy League of the United States Aug 2000
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