The US Navy is transferring its remaining Cyclone-class patrol ships to the Philippines, providing a much-needed boost to the Asian nation’s maritime surveillance capabilities.
The navy is sending its USS Monsoon and USS Chinook, recently decommissioned after nearly three decades in service.
According to a press release, the two patrol craft are the last of 10 ships stationed in Bahrain to conduct shallow-water operations.
“I’m proud of our crews for reaching this milestone and representing our nation and Navy with utmost pride and professionalism,” US Navy official Anthony Webber said.
“I’m also proud that we are turning over great ships to our Philippine partners.”
The Philippine Navy is no stranger to the Cyclone-class patrol vessels.
In 2004, the service commissioned the BRP General Mariano Alvarez, previously known as the US Navy’s USS Cyclone.
The patrol craft, delivered through a US military assistance package, was expected to bolster Manila’s counterterrorism and maritime security capabilities.
After a few years of using the Cyclone, the nation’s Littoral Combat Force signified its intention to acquire more of the vessels.
The Philippines sent teams to visually inspect the craft in Hawaii and Bahrain.
Cyclones were deployed in Manama to secure the 5,000-mile (8,046-kilometer) coastline of the Arabian Gulf.
After being decommissioned, the US Navy transferred five of them to the Royal Bahrain Naval Force to continue their mission.
It also chose the Egyptian Navy to receive the USS Hurricane, USS Sirocco, and USS Thunderbolt.
Bahrain, Egypt, and the Philippines are members of the US-led Combined Maritime Forces international naval partnership.
“With 28 years of crew covering multiple generations, each one was dedicated to the mission, adapting to rapidly changing mission sets,” Chinook commanding officer Lt. Cmdr. David Hartmann explained.