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By U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa Public Affairs
The Famous-class medium endurance USCGC Mohawk (WMEC 913) completed a regularly scheduled deployment to the Gulf of Guinea, Sept. 2, 2022.
From July to September, Mohawk conducted maritime security and law enforcement operations as well as continued building valued relationships with allies and partners from Cote d'Ivoire, France, The Gambia, Ghana, Morocco, Nigeria, Portugal, Senegal, and Sierra Leone.
"I am extremely proud of this crew and all they have accomplished over the last three months," said Cmdr. Andrew Pate, commanding officer of the Coast Guard Cutter Mohawk. "We are operating in a global Coast Guard and Mohawk's ability to deploy across the Atlantic Ocean, and work alongside our European and African partners to combat piracy and Illegal, Unregulated, and Unreported fishing drives home the United States' commitment to security, stability, and prosperity in the region."
Mohawk’s deployment also demonstrated the United States’ longstanding commitment of supporting African partners with addressing their security challenges in the maritime domain. The U.S. maritime services routinely work with allied and partner nations to foster a united, global effort to safeguard free and open access to international waterways.
“The successful deployment of USCGC Mohawk to the Gulf of Guinea highlights our continued commitment to our West African partners,” said Vice Adm. Kevin Lunday, commander of U.S. Coast Guard Atlantic Area. “The U.S. Coast Guard is a valued member of the Joint Force, providing unique authorities and capabilities to aid partner nations as they address security and prosperity challenges. Our collaboration and sharing of best practices with our West African counterparts allows us to assist in combating narcotics smuggling, promoting freedom of commerce, and deterring illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing in their waters.”
Mohawk was forward-deployed to the U.S. Naval Forces Africa (NAVAF) area of operations, and employed by U.S. Sixth Fleet. This is the latest of several U.S. Coast Guard cutter deployments to the region.
NAVAF’s ongoing maritime security cooperation with African partners focuses on maritime safety and security through increased maritime awareness, response capabilities, and infrastructure. It also includes various exercises and operations conducted by U.S., European, and African partners and allies throughout the U.S. Africa Command area of responsibility.
“Maritime security and law enforcement is critical for our coastal African partners, whose economies are tied to seaborne trade,” said Cmdr. Derek Cromwell, USCG liaison officer to NAVAF. “Together with our partners, Mohawk was able to increase opportunities for prosperity and global stability through presence operations and meaningful discussions with regional leaders about protecting maritime trade and governance.”
The U.S. shares a common interest with African partner nations in ensuring security, safety, and freedom of navigation on the waters surrounding the continent, because these waters are critical for Africa’s prosperity and access to global markets.
Mohawk is the 13th and last of the Famous-class cutters. It is named for the Algonquin tribe of Iroquoian Indians who lived in the Mohawk Valley of New York, and is the third cutter to bear the name. Mohawk’s parent command is U.S. Coast Guard Atlantic Area.
U.S. Coast Guard Atlantic Area, headquartered in Portsmouth, Virginia, oversees all Coast Guard operations east of the Rocky Mountains to the Arabian Gulf, spanning across five Coast Guard districts and 40 states.
For over 80 years, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-U.S. Naval Forces Africa (NAVEUR-NAVAF) has forged strategic relationships with allies and partners, leveraging a foundation of shared values to preserve security and stability.
Headquartered in Naples, Italy, NAVEUR-NAVAF operates U.S. naval forces in the U.S. European Command (USEUCOM) and U.S. Africa Command (USAFRICOM) areas of responsibility. U.S. Sixth Fleet is permanently assigned to NAVEUR-NAVAF, and employs maritime forces through the full spectrum of joint and naval operations.