South Africa has recently announced that it will send a Valour Class frigate to the Mozambique Channel to contribute to the continental effort to improve maritime security.
South Africa has struggled to contribute to the effort in recent months because it does not possess any available ships that would be suitable for such a mission. This is because the countries few frigates we preoccupied conducting multinational training exercises.
Though unconfirmed, it has been reported that the SAS Amatola will be the ship called upon to maintain a station in the vital channel. This ship has participated in the Atlasure and Ibsamar exercises last year, and is currently being prepared for deployment to the channel.
A official statement from the South African Navy confirmed that a ship would be deployed to this location, but did not specifically name the Amatola:
“Early this year a Navy vessel will take up patrol duties in Mozambican waters. Specific details cannot be divulged for security reasons.”
South Africa will also make available a 35 Squadron C-47TP maritime reconnaissance aerial vehicle; a portion of the maritime reaction squadron from the Navy; and support services from the South African Army and Air Force.