Coast Guard Cutter Returns from African Deployment

PORTSMOUTH, Va. – The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Legare home ported in Portsmouth will return here Friday following a 108-day deployment to the Gulf of Guinea region of West Africa.

The Legare crew deployed to Africa in support of U.S. Naval Forces Europe and U.S. Sixth Fleet’s long-term strategy to improve maritime security and safety throughout the west coast of Africa.

The crew of the Legare conducted professional training on law enforcement and search and rescue, participated in local community service projects, hosted receptions for foreign and U.S. dignitaries and even played soccer games with local military personnel and school children.

While deployed the Legare’s mission primarily focused on engaging enduring and emerging allies at every opportunity in order to further security and cooperation throughout the region.

While visiting several nations in West Africa, crewmembers met with the militaries, port authorities and customs law enforcement officials from each country. Common concerns were the enforcement of fisheries regulations, illicit drug trafficking, illegal immigration, search and rescue and environmental protection-all part of the U.S. Coast Guard’s portfolio of missions.

Legare became the first U.S. military ship to moor in Monrovia in more than 17 years, following the end of Liberia’s lengthy civil war, and the first ever U.S. vessel to visit Freetown, Sierra Leone. Other visits included Sekondi, Ghana; Cotonou, Benin; and Lome, Togo.

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