German warships bring 700 sailors to Portsmouth

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CPO Martin Owen helps Meon Junior School pupils with their Lego robots. Picture by Malcolm Wells

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SEVEN-HUNDRED German sailors are set to flood into Portsmouth this weekend.

Two German navy frigates, the FGS Hessen and FGS Emden, and a 18,000-tonne supply tanker, the FGS Frankfurt Am Main, will sail into Portsmouth Naval Base tomorrow.

The Nato warships will bring a total of 693 sailors into the city for the weekend. They are due to leave on Monday morning.

Hessen will pass the Round Tower in Old Portsmouth at 9am tomorrow. She will be followed by Emden at noon and Frankfurt Am Main at around 12.45pm.

The German task group left its base in Wilhelmshaven last month and Portsmouth is the first stop for the ships in a seven-month deployment which will see the vessels take part in training exercises with Nato allies in Western Europe and the US before they return home in July.

The warships are due to call into ports in Dublin, Ireland, France, Portugal, Iceland and Spain, before crossing the Atlantic to visit the US and Canada.