Australia assumes command of Combined Task Force 150

Commodore Ed Ahlgren, Royal Navy (Left) relinquishes command of Combined Task Force 150 to Commodore Ray Leggatt, Royal Australian Navy (right) during  a ceremony at Combined Maritime Forces Headquarters in Manama, Bahrain. The change of command was presided over by Commander Combined Maritime Forces Vice Admiral James Malloy (centre).

Commodore Ed Ahlgren, Royal Navy (Left) relinquishes command of Combined Task Force 150 to Commodore Ray Leggatt, Royal Australian Navy (right) during a ceremony at Combined Maritime Forces Headquarters in Manama, Bahrain. The change of command was presided over by Commander Combined Maritime Forces Vice Admiral James Malloy (centre).

Lt(N) Tony Wright, CTF 150 Public Affairs Officer ~

In December, Commodore (CDRE) Ray Leggatt assumed command of Combined Task Force 150 (CTF 150) in a ceremony held at Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) Headquarters in Manama, Bahrain.

CDRE Leggatt’s team, comprised of members of the Royal Australian (RAN), Royal Canadian (RCN), and Royal New Zealand (RNZN) navies, came together as strangers in late September. After six weeks of preparation and Mission Readiness Evaluations in Sydney and two weeks of handover with the outgoing UK/French contingent in Bahrain, the team is now tightly knit and ready to assume the duties of CTF 150.

“I am truly honoured to be taking this command; the 8th time that Australia has led CTF 150,” said CDRE Leggatt on assuming command.  “We are fortunate to have an Australian, Canadian and New Zealand staff composition, which I believe will bring valuable diversity in thinking and experience, providing us with agility and unity of effort in prosecuting our mission to disrupt terrorist organizations by restricting their freedom of maneuver in the maritime domain.”

CTF 150, headquartered in the Kingdom of Bahrain, is one of three combined task forces within the CMF.

The 33 member nations of CMF work together to strengthen maritime security in the Middle East Region, conducting maritime security operations, capacity building activities, and regional engagement.

“It’s taken a lot of work to get to this point and we’ve put in a lot of miles,” said CTF 150 Deputy Commander CAPT Sean Stewart, RNZN. “We are excited to be here and really looking forward to getting stuck into the work we’ve trained for.”

For this mission, Australia has deployed 16 Royal Australian Navy personnel, while 7 members from the Royal Canadian Navy and 5 from the Royal New Zealand Navy make up the remainder of the staff. They will join around 100 coalition members currently supporting CMF.

“Doing the work ups in Sydney and coming to Bahrain to take part in this mission with such a diverse team is one of the highlights of my career,” said Operations Room Officer LCDR Rob Brunner RCN. “I’ve learned a lot from our Australian and New Zealand team members and I’m sure the Canadians here have passed on some tricks to them.”

This Australian lead rotation of CTF 150 is expected to run until late March 2020 when another CMF participating nation will take over.

Filed Under: Top Stories

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