First mine hunting vessel launched in Belgium

The first mine countermeasures vessel from a binational project with Belgium has been launched today. During the ceremony in the French Concarneau, Naval handed over the ship’s Bell and the nameplates of BNS Oostende to the Belgian Navy.

The Ostend is the first of 12 new mine countermeasures vessels that the Royal Navy has acquired and developed together with Belgium. Both countries get 6. The current Minehunters of both navies are nearing the end of their service lives.

The construction of the second new Belgian minesweeper has also begun. The keel of BNS Tournai was laid today.

According to minister Kajsa Ollongren, it is not only the Netherlands and Belgium that will benefit from the brand new mine fighters. “Safe, freely accessible seas and waterways are vital for a strong and prosperous Europe. The use of sea mines is alive and well. Old mines and bombs from the world wars and improvised explosives of a few hundred euros have the potential to be disruptive.”

The author: Michel DEURINCK

Michel Deurinck, born in Brussels in 1950, started his career in the Belgian civil service, dedicating over 30 years to public service. Upon retirement, he pursued his passion for journalism. Transitioning into this new field, he quickly gained recognition for his insightful reporting on politics and culture. Deurinck's balanced and thoughtful approach to journalism has made him a respected figure in Belgian media.

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