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Ships helicopter helps photograph dugongs

KOROR, Palau (Island Times, Feb. 9, 2012) – The Vendemiaire, under command of Commander Jean-Christophe Olieric with 94 crew, was in Palau on a goodwill visit from February 6-9.

The frigate is designed to carry out surveillance missions as well as humanitarian action and enforce French interests far away from the mainland.

The Vendemiaire is based out of New Caledonia, and has visited Palau on numerous occasions in the past. The last visit was in 2008.

The 93.5 meter vessel carries an Alouette III helicopter. During the Palau visit, an hour helicopter time was donated to survey the Malakal harbor area and photograph dugongs for the "I love Mesekiu" campaign.

Commander Olieric and Consul Bruno Magnenat from the French Embassy in Manila, who was in Palau to greet the vessel, were also able to dive some of the wrecks and reefs of Palau with Neco Marine dive shop during their visit.

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