31.08.2012 Elior Levy
Cairo strengthening naval fleet with new submarines from Germany says Naval Commander Ahmed el-Gendy. New additions also include ships from US, Holland and Turkey
Egypt's Naval Commander Osama Ahmed el-Gendy, said on Friday that Egypt has signed an agreement with Germany in which the former will acquire two German-built Type-209 attack submarines.
He stressed that the deal had already been signed even though he says "the submarines currently used by the Egyptian navy are capable of carrying out their tasks and respond to anything in the Mediterranean or Red Sea. The Egyptian military is always looking to the future at to the latest innovations."
The Type-209 models were built by Germany in the 1960s and are used in many navies around the world including Turkey, Greece, Argentina, Brazil and Indonesia.
The Egyptian navy has a small and relatively outdated fleet. Israel's Dolphin submarines are also based on the 209 model but are more advanced.
The naval commander was speaking for the first time since he was appointed to his role, during naval maneuvers Egypt is currently holding with its Greek counterpart.
"Egypt will not allow anyone to enter our territorial waters," el-Gendy told Egypt's al-Ahram newspaper.
"Our navy is in good condition and is at the highest degree of operational readiness. We are carrying out our duties and guarding what is our day and night. We are ready to deal with developments we are faced with like weapons smuggling and illegal immigration," the naval commander added.
He added that during the year 2013, Egypt will further add four US-built missile ships to its navy. According to el-Gendy, these are FMC missile boats that each weigh 800 tons, are capable of sailing for a long period of time and have the highest levels of defense and attack capabilities.
He also noted that Egypt received additional ships from the US but Egypt is also receiving ships from other countries – rescue and towing ships from Holland as well as ships from Turkey.