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HMS MIDDLETON visits Kuwait as part of UK-Kuwait Defence Cooperation

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‘Vessel’s primary role is to protect vital sea lanes, ensure access to sea bases’

KUWAIT CITY, Aug 27: HMS MIDDLETON visited Shuwaikh port on 24 August 2022 for two days as part of UK-Kuwait Cooperation. HMS MIDDLETON is one of eight Hunt-class minehunters in the Royal Navy which make up Second Mine Countermeasures Squadron (MCM2).

The ship uses high-powered sonar, remote underwater vehicles and a crew of divers to deal with sea-bed threats. Her role in providing safety in the region is vital to protecting the global trade and clearing the way for military operations. HMS MIDDLETON’s primary role is to protect vital sea lanes and ensure access to sea bases. It’s a job of considerable importance, safeguarding the global security of energy supplies and contributing to wider safety at sea. There are always a minimum of three of the Royal Navy’s Mine Counter Measures Vessels operating in the Persian Gulf at any one time, which means HMS Middleton plays a key role in maintaining peace and stability in the region.

The Minesweeper is captained by Lieutenant Commander Gemma Britton, one of a number of female Commanding Officers in the Royal Naval fleet. During HMS MIDDLETON’s visit to Kuwait, Lieutenant Commander Gemma Britton RN received Kuwait Naval Forces officers on board to conduct training and learn more about the Royal Navy Diving Unit. Lieutenant Commander Britton also accompanied Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Kuwait, Her Excellency Mrs Belinda Lewis, on an official meeting with Kuwait Chief of General Staff of Kuwait Armed Forces His Excellency Lt Gen Sheikh Khaled Saleh Mohammad Al-Sabah and other Kuwaiti officials to discuss the joint Defence Cooperation and the upcoming opportunity for UK-Kuwait training. At the end of the visit, Lt Cdr Gemma Britton and Her Majesty’s Ambassador Belinda Lewis hosted a reception at Shuwaikh Port to mark the strong defence relationship between the two countries.

Many Kuwaiti officials and officers from Kuwait Naval Forces and British Military Mission attended the reception. Her Majesty’s Ambassador Belinda Lewis said, “it is a great pleasure to welcome HMS MIDDLETON and her crew to Kuwait. Kuwait and the UK share a deep and long-standing history and the defence relationship between our militaries sits right at the heart of this share history. HMS MIDDLETON’s visit to Kuwait is part of wider maritime exercises between the Royal Navy and the Kuwaiti Commanded Combined Task Force 152, it is excellent to see the collaborative working between the two militaries.” Lieutenant Commander Gemma Britton Royal Navy said: ‘It is a great honour for me to bring HMS MIDDLETON to Kuwait as part of a series of very successful exercises with the Kuwait led Combined Task Force 152. It was a great pleasure to host officers from the Kuwaiti forces to share experiences and training and to meet so many Kuwaiti officials during the course of the various events during our brief stay. I hope to be able to bring HMS MIDDLETON back to Kuwait again very shortly.’

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