French Ambassador Salina Grenet-Catalano had nothing but praises for the level of hospitality offered by Cypriot authorities to the crew of the French aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle that sailed in the port of Limassol.
Speaking in a press conference on Monday about the flagship of French navy currently in Cyprus, she expressed gratitude to Cypriot authorities for the continuous services to warships of the French navy but also for the high level of hospitality and cooperation in matters of defense and security.
Charles de Gaulle, which has sailed before in Limassol is leading the naval Task Force 473 and participates in Clemenceau 21, a mission that is part of the Inherent Resolve operation aimed at eliminating ISIS.
Captain Guillaume Pinget, the nuclear flattop’s captain, also thanked Cypriot authorities for hosting them in “these special conditions of the pandemic.”
The carrier had been to Cyprus several times and as recent as 2020, prompting its captain to call Limassol 'a familiar place for sailors and they are happy to rest'
The carrier had been to Cyprus several times in the past, as recent as 2020, prompting Pinget to call Limassol “a familiar place for sailors and they are happy to rest after three months of leaving their base in Toulon and after three weeks in the Persian Gulf.”
There are 1200 sailors on the Charles de Gaulle, along with 500 marines and some 100 naval officers. The aircraft carrier also carries 20 Rafale Marine fighter jets, two all-weather airborne early warning aircrafts 2C Hawkeye, as well as Caiman and Dauphin Pedro helicopters.
According to media reports, Cyprus’ defense ministry said it would carry joint maneuvers with the French task force as part of a bilateral defense cooperation agreement.
Charles de gaulle is expected to leave Cyprus in about a week.