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2 German warships to visit San Diego as part of large military exercise

RIMPAC 2024 Mid-Planning Conference (Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Andre T. Richard/US Navy)

German warships will make a rare visit to San Diego Bay on Tuesday before heading to the Hawaiian islands for Rim of the Pacific, the world’s largest biennial maritime warfare exercise.

Nearly 30 countries and 40 surface ships will participate in RIMPAC, including many Navy vessels homeported in San Diego. The war games, which begin on June 26, also will feature three submarines, 14 national land forces and more than 150 aircraft.

The German Navy says the 492-foot frigate Baden-Wurttemberg and the 570-foot combat support ship Frankfurt am Main have been chosen for Tuesday’s visit to San Diego.

The arrival time of the German warships has not been announced, but a media advisory indicates that the vessels will reach the docks in the morning.

At the moment, Germany has working frigates, but the U.S. does not. It decommissioned its last frigate in September 2015.

The frigates were replaced by littoral combat ships, which have struggled to find a lasting role because of design, repair and operational issues. They will eventually be replaced by so-called Constellation-class frigates, a new type of guided missile vessel.

Construction of the first new frigate began in 2022, but work is now at a standstill due to serious design problems, according to a report last month by the U.S. Government Accountability Office. Up to 20 frigates are expected to be built, some of which will be homeported in San Diego.


© 2024 The San Diego Union-Tribune

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