THE Royal Navy is set to deploy the Type 45 destroyer HMS Dauntless to the Falkland Islands this week, The News can reveal.
The state-of-the-art £1bn warship will pass the Round Tower in Old Portsmouth shortly after 10am on Wednesday.
The departure comes just one day before the 30th anniversary of when the Falklands task force left Portsmouth to regain the islands on April 5, 1982. Then, thousands of people lined the seafront to see HMS Hermes and HMS Invincible leave for war.
Although the crowds will be smaller 30 years on, Dauntless is sure to get a good send off amid renewed tensions with Argentina over the disputed territory.
In February, Argentina reacted strongly after The News first broke the story of the navy’s plan to send Dauntless south.
At the United Nations, the country accused the UK of ‘militarising’ the South Atlantic – a claim that was refuted by Prime Minister David Cameron. The navy says the deployment is a routine patrol.