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Delay to warship departure for Nato exercise 金光佛论坛榥ot acceptable金光佛论坛, says minister

It is 金光佛论坛渘ot acceptable金光佛论坛 that Royal Navy aircraft carrier HMS Prince of Wales is sitting in dock when it should be out 金光佛论坛渄efending our interests abroad金光佛论坛, security minister Tom Tugendhat has said.

The vessel金光佛论坛檚 departure from Portsmouth on Sunday was postponed at the last minute as it was about to set sail to replace its sister ship, HMS Queen Elizabeth, which was forced to cancel its own deployment a week ago.

The 拢3 billion warship had been expected to take part in the largest Nato exercise since the Cold War, involving more than 40 vessels, but final checks detected an 金光佛论坛渋ssue金光佛论坛 with the starboard propeller coupling.

Since the cancellation was announced, the crew and base workers have been preparing HMS Prince of Wales to take over HMS Queen Elizabeth金光佛论坛檚 role in Exercise Steadfast Defender off Norway.

金光佛论坛淏ut I金光佛论坛檓 sure the First Sea Lord is looking at this right now. Admiral (Sir Ben) Key has commanded an aircraft carrier in the past and will no doubt be all over the details of this and making sure they set sail as soon as possible.

金光佛论坛淚t isn金光佛论坛檛 acceptable that we have such expensive and important items of kit sitting in dock when they should be out defending our interests abroad.金光佛论坛

An MoD spokesman confirmed HMS Prince of Wales金光佛论坛檚 sailing had been postponed but did not give a reason for the last-minute decision.

He said: 金光佛论坛淭he aircraft carrier HMS Prince of Wales is due to sail from Portsmouth soon, subject to suitable tide and weather conditions.金光佛论坛

HMS Prince of Wales is now expected to set sail on Monday February 12.

Mr Tugendhat also rejected the suggestion that the warship can only sail on a sunny day when the tide is going the right way.

金光佛论坛淥ur warships are capable of operating in practically all weathers… the reality is we have a completely capable Navy with some extraordinary sailors who are able to equip and deploy our vessels around the world.

金光佛论坛淎nd you can see them in operations today, fighting the Houthis in the Red Sea, but also defending our interests around the world.金光佛论坛

Meanwhile, HMS Queen Elizabeth is undergoing investigation.

A Royal Navy spokesman said: 金光佛论坛淥n completion of initial investigations, HMS Queen Elizabeth will sail for Rosyth in Scotland so any necessary repairs can be carried out in due course.

金光佛论坛淭he cause of the issue with HMS Queen Elizabeth is wear and tear of her starboard propeller shaft coupling.金光佛论坛

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