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Indonesia proposes to equip ‘Red White' frigates with Turkish missiles

A segment of the ‘Red White' frigate, seen here during a visit by Janes to PT PAL. Indonesia has proposed the ship be equipped with Turkish anti-air and anti-ship missiles. (PT PAL)

Indonesia's defence ministry has proposed that its two future ‘Red White' frigates be equipped with a selection of combat systems, including missiles, that are sourced from Turkey.

Documents provided to Janes by a naval source during a visit to Surabaya confirm that this proposal will effectively revise an earlier plan that called for a more diverse list of weapon suppliers.

Indonesia signed a contract for two ‘Red White' frigates with state-owned shipbuilder PT PAL in April 2020. The frigates are being built to the Arrowhead 140 design provided by UK defence group Babcock under a licence agreement.

Babcock's Arrowhead 140 design is in turn based on the Royal Danish Navy's three-ship Iver Huitfeldt class, which was commissioned between January and November 2011.

Keel for the first frigate was laid down in August 2023 while steel for the second ship was first cut on 5 June 2024.

Each warship will displace about 5,996 tonnes at full load and have an overall length of 140 m.

The warships have each been designed to accommodate a 12-cell vertical launching system (VLS) for medium-range surface-to-air missiles (SAMs), a separate 12-cell VLS for long-range SAMs, a 16-cell VLS for surface-to-surface missiles (SSMs), two 76 mm naval guns, and a 35 mm close-in weapon system (CIWS).

Documents provided to Janes indicate that the Indonesian defence ministry had earlier planned for the SAMs to be the VL-MICA system from MBDA while the SSMs were planned to be the BrahMos anti-ship missile from BrahMos Aerospace.

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