In one of the largest show of naval prowess in Qatar, 13 warships from nine navies are currently moored at the Doha Commercial Port for the second edition of the Doha International Maritime Defence Exhibition and Conference (DIMDEX 2010) currently underway.
Beginning yesterday, for three days, trade and professional visitors are welcome aboard the warships hailing from Australia, France, India, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Pakistan, Turkey, USA, and the UK for guided tours.
The warships which are one of the highlights of the biennial defence expo represent the latest in naval technologies and operational systems.
The tours give each visitor a rare chance to witness and learn about distinct characteristics of the different types of war vessels anchored at the port.
The vessels which include frigate, patrol boat, submarine, missile boat, landing ship dock, and mine hunter.
One of the warships worth visiting is the USS Mesa Verde (LPD 19), an amphibious transport dock also called landing platform dock (LPD) type of warship whose length of 208.5 meters makes it the longest warship included in the fleet featured in this year’s Warship Display.
USS Mesa Verde is the third San-Antonio class LPD to be named for Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado, a significant archaeological and anthropological site in the US. Commissioned in 2007, the ship was designed to deliver a fully equipped battalion of up to 800 marines and to support the Marine Corps mobility triad, which consists of the landing craft air cushion, advanced amphibious assault vehicles and the MV-22A Osprey tilt rotor aircraft.
The ship also provides improved war fighting capabilities including an advanced command-and-control suite, increased lift-capacity in vehicle and cargo-carrying capability and advanced ship-survivability features.
Visitors which included local and international mediapersons were given the opportunity to tour the US vessel.
The visitors were amazed of the three-year-old ship’s vehicle storage area equipped with varied types of military vehicles on its three levels. At the helicopter flight deck, seven AH-1W Super Cobra and UH-1N Huey helicopters are currently stationed. An exhibition of firearms and other military equipment used for various operations such as explosive ordnance disposal, construction and demolition, and riot control were all on display. The officers explained and answered queries on the firearms comprising MK-153, M2 .50 cal, M41, M240B, M224, and M327 among others.
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