CSG21

HMS Queen Elizabeth: Royal Navy Flagship Arrives In Cyprus

The flagship is spearheading the 28-week deployment of the Carrier Strike Group, the largest British peacetime deployment in a generation.

The Royal Navy flagship HMS Queen Elizabeth has docked in Cyprus, as she continues to spearhead the largest British peacetime deployment in a generation, Carrier Strike Group 21 (CSG21). 

Over the coming days in the port city of Limassol, the aircraft carrier will host a series of Cypriot dignitaries and British forces personnel who are based in the country.

US Navy destroyer USS The Sullivans, which is part of CSG21, has also arrived in the port.

HMS Queen Elizabeth has been at sea for three weeks since leaving Sicily, the first stop on the tour, and recently completed a period of operations focused in the Eastern Mediterranean. 

F-35Bs on board the Queen Elizabeth-class carrier have been flying combat missions against so-called Islamic State (IS) in Iraq and Syria as part of Operation Shader

Watch: Spectacular Footage Of HMS Queen Elizabeth In Cyprus.

Ahead of the £3.2bn ship's arrival in Limassol, Commodore Steve Moorhouse, Commander of the UK Carrier Strike Group, said: "The Mediterranean remains as important to our collective security and prosperity in the 21st Century as it has as any other time in our history.

"In the case of Cyprus, we look forward to leading a diverse programme of joint training, visits and discussions with Cypriot leaders across the defence, security and cyber areas from government, national guard and many, many other sectors of society. 

"We see this as a huge opportunity to build on the strong UK-Cyprus partnership through the convening power of HMS Queen Elizabeth and all that she has to offer," he added.

The roughly 1,600-strong crew of HMS Queen Elizabeth will get a chance to take some shore leave during the ship's stay in Cyprus. 

Watch: F-35s take off on their first combat missions from HMS Queen Elizabeth in support of Operation Shader earlier this month.