The British naval ship, HMS Richmond, came alongside Port Victoria on Wednesday, March 2 and for the first time, a UK naval ship did a ceremonial arrival, whereby all available crew were dressed in their military whites on portside as they docked.
At Port Victoria to greet the arriving British Naval Ship were Mr. Mathew Forbes, the British High Commissioner, and Alain St.Ange, the CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board.
Alain St.Ange said that this was quite a visual spectacle as he and the British High Commissioner were greeted by the Ship’s Captain and invited onboard HMS Richmond to discuss the Ship’s participation in the 2011 Seychelles “Carnaval International de Victoria.” The involvement of UK’s HMS Richmond alongside the large anti-submarine warship, “Admiral Vinogradov” from the Russian fleet, and the “INS Sukanya” from the Indian naval force is to help to show the commitment of the community of nations in their task to ensure that the shipping routes of the Indian Ocean are made safe.
The Captain of HMS Richmond told the press that they were in Seychelles to support the country’s carnival and to show the presence of naval ships in the Indian Ocean and in so doing, echo the sentiments of the community of nations on the need to rid the important Indian Ocean maritime route of pirates.
UK’s High Commissioner to the Seychelles, Mr. Mathew Forbes, welcomed the ship to Victoria and said that the UK was showing its support for the Seychelles carnival by having HMS Richmond here. Alain St.Ange, who was responsible to issue appeals for naval ships to be in Victoria for the 2011 Seychelles “Carnaval International de Victoria,” said that Seychelles was thankful for the support of the community of nations in their drive to make the shipping route of the Indian Ocean a safe route.
“We needed to send out a message that the world stands together to rid that Indian Ocean shipping route of pirates, and what a better way to do that than through participation in a media opportunity with a difference. We salute the support of the British, Russian, and Indian naval ships to echo this commitment on behalf of all the other partners from the community of nations,” Alain St.Ange said.
Some 70 sailors from the HMS Richmond will be parading in the carnival float procession behind the Notting Hill Carnival Float, the UK’s own float.