French ship Mistral (L9013)

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For other ships of the same name, see French ship Mistral.
Mistral preparing for the celebrations of the 8th of May 2009
Career (France)
Namesake: Wind Mistral
Builder: Arsenal de Brest, Chantiers de Saint-Nazaire
Laid down:

10 July 2003 (aft part in Brest)

13 October 2003 (bow part in Saint-Nazaire)
Launched: 6 October 2004 in Brest
Commissioned: December 2005
Homeport: Toulon
Fate: In service
General characteristics
Class & type: Mistral-class amphibious assault ship

16,500 t (empty)
21,300 t (full load)

32,300 t (with ballasts)
Length: 199 m
Beam: 32 m
Draught: 6,3 m
Propulsion: Motorisation : 2 Mermaïd electric motors (2 × 7 MW)
2 5-bladed propellers
Electrical plant: 4 Wärtsilä diesels-alternators 16 V32 (6,2 MW) + 1 Wärtsilä Vaasa auxiliary diesel-alternator 18V200 (3 MW)
Speed: 18.8 knots
Range: 10,800 km at 18 knots
19,800 km at 15 knots
Capacity: 2 barges, one Leclerc battalion, 70 vehicles
Complement: 20 officers, 80 petty officers, 60 Quarter-masters, 450 passengers (900 for a short cruise), 150 men operational headquarter

2 Simbad systems
2 30 mm Breda-Mauser

4 12.7 mm M2-HB Browning machine guns
Aircraft carried: 16 heavy or 35 light helicopters

The Mistral (L9013) is an amphibious assault ship, a type of helicopter carrier, of the French Navy. She is the fourth vessel to bear the name, and is the lead ship of the Mistral-class amphibious assault ships.


The Mistral started her trials in January 2005, and was officially commissioned in February 2006. She departed from Toulon for her first long-range journey in March, sailing through the Mediterranean, Suez, and the Red Sea to Djibouti and India, before returning to France.

In July, to ensure the safety of European citizens in the context of the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict, France set up Opération Baliste. The Mistral is the flagship of the system off Lebanon, escorted by the frigates Jean Bart and Jean de Vienne, and along with the Siroco.

On 16 May 2008, the Burmese UN ambassador accused France of deploying the Mistral to the Burmese coast for military purposes, which the French UN ambassador denied, stating that she was instead carrying 1,500 tons of relief supplies.[1]

In February 2010 it was announced that France had agreed to sell Russia a Mistral with a potential option for three more vessels.[2] June 17, 2011 Russia and France signed $1.7bln deal for mistral carrier[3]

In March 2011 she was deployed to Libyan waters to help aid the joint NATO effort to repatriate tens of thousands of Egyptian refugees fleeing the violence in Libya.[4]

In January 2013, escorted by Chevalier Paul, she took part in the ill-fated operation to retrieve Denis Allex,[5] a DGSE officer held hostage in Bulo Marer.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ France angered by Burmese delays BBC Online
  2. ^ Christian Science Monitor report
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^ EXCLUSIF. Somalie : le raid pour libérer Denis Allex a été conduit depuis le Mistral, Le Point

External links[edit]

  • (French) BPC Mistral Force Projection and Command Ship Mistral on Alabordache
  • (French) BPC Mistral Force Projection and Command Ship Mistral