His Highness Sheikh Isa bin Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa toured Wednesday the French aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle, at the Khalifa bin Salman Port, on the occasion of the aircraft carrier’s visit to the Kingdom of Bahrain.
Upon arrival, HH Sheikh Isa bin Salman was welcomed by Admiral Marc Aussedat, Commander of the Charles de Gaulle Carrier Strike Group, Bahrain News Agency (BNA) reported.
During the visit, HH Sheikh Isa bin Salman conveyed the best wishes of HM King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, and HRH Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the Crown Prince and Prime Minister to the President of the French Republic, HE Emmanuel Macron.
HH Sheikh Isa bin Salman highlighted the strength of relations between the Kingdom of Bahrain and the French Republic, and the importance of furthering cooperation across various sectors.
He further welcomed the French aircraft carrier and crew to the Kingdom of Bahrain, and extended gratitude for their contributions, alongside allies, to safeguarding regional safety and stability.
HH Sheikh Isa bin Salman was then briefed by Admiral Aussedat on the mission and functions of the aircraft carrier in the region.
Sheikh Isa is the son of Prince Salman bin Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, Deputy King, Crown Prince of Bahrain, Heir Apparent and Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Bahrain. Prince Salman is also the Deputy Supreme Commander of the Bahrain Defense Force.
Charles de Gaulle is the flagship of the French Navy (Marine Nationale). The ship is the tenth French aircraft carrier, the first French nuclear-powered surface vessel, and the only nuclear-powered carrier completed outside of the United States Navy. The vessel is named after French President and General Charles de Gaulle.
The ship carries a complement of Dassault Rafale M and E‑2C Hawkeye aircraft, EC725 Caracal and AS532 Cougar helicopters for combat search and rescue, as well as modern electronics and Aster missiles. The vessel is also a CATOBAR-type carrier that uses two 75 m C13‑3 steam catapults of a shorter version of the catapult system installed on the U.S. Nimitz-class aircraft carriers, one catapult at the bow and one across the front of the landing area.
As of May 2019, Charles de Gaulle is the only non-American carrier-vessel that has a catapult launch system, which has allowed for operation of F/A-18E/F Super Hornets and C-2 Greyhounds of the US Navy.