Croatia shipyard "Viktor Lenac" will provide services maintenance and overhauls to a command vessel USS Mount Whitney
Croatia's Defence Minister Davor Bozinovic met on Monday, September 12, with the Commander of Allied Joint Force Command Naples and Commander of Naval Forces of the United States, Europe and Africa, Admiral Samuel J. Locklear.
In a statement to the media after the meeting, it was announced the beginning of cooperation relating to the use of the capacity of Croatian shipyards, specifically the shipyard "Viktor Lenac" from Rijeka, with regard to the maintenance and overhauls of the U.S. Navy 6th Fleet flagship, " USS Mount Whitney", which will be maintained and serviced in this shipyard.
"I am confident that Croatia and Croatian shipyards which have long tradition and knowledge will use this opportunity. I see this deal worth of 6.5 million Euros as the beginning of fruitful and successful cooperation between the Republic of Croatia and Croatian shipyards on one and U.S. and its armed forces on the other hand", Minister Bozinovic said in a media statement. Minister also emphasized that this is just one of many areas of cooperation that Croatia has with NATO, stressing the contribution that the Republic of Croatia together with other NATO members provided to NATO operations, specifically in the "Unified Protector" in Libya and KFOR in Kosovo. "Operation in Libya has shown that NATO is able to perform a successful action in which tens of thousands of civilians were rescued, although the operation is not over yet but now we can say that a tyrannical government that has committed crimes on its own citizens will no longer be in a position to do so", Bozinovic said.
Admiral Locklear, who was in the first official visit to Croatia, in his address emphasized the contribution that the Republic of Croatia and the Armed Forces make to meet the goals of the NATO Alliance, calling it extraordinary. He also thanked all members of the Armed Forces participating in numerous peacekeeping missions and operations around the world, and their families on the support they give them.
Speaking about the beginning of cooperation with the Croatian shipyard "Viktor Lenac" from Rijeka on the maintenance and repair of the "USS Mount Whitney" ship, Admiral Locklear said that shipyard "Viktor Lenac" was selected in the competition between several suppliers in Europe, thanks to its experience, capability, transparency and flexibility and value of the offer. "I hope that this work will serve as a positive example for other Croatian shipyards in the provision of maintenance and servicing of the U.S. ships", Admiral Locklear said.
U.S. warship "USS Mount Whitney" is one of 2 flags ship of the U.S. Navy and represents a sort of a naval headquarters on the water. The ship length is 195 meters, width 33 meters, 9 meters of gauze, a speed of 16 knots, and has a crew of 300 sailors and civilians.
It was launched in 1971, has autonomy in the sea of 90 days, and the ability to support the evacuation of 3000 people.