French frigate Somali

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Destroyer d'escorte Somali
Destroyer d'escorte Somali (T53)
United States
Name: USS Somali (DE-111)
Builder: Dravo Corporation, Wilmington, Delaware
Laid down: 23 October 1943
Launched: 12 February 1944
Fate: Transferred to Free France, 9 April 1944
Struck: 14 May 1952
Free France
Name: FFL Somali (T-53)
Namesake: Somali
Acquired: 9 April 1944
Name: Somali (T-23)
Acquired: 14 October 1946
Renamed: Arago (A-607), for Jacques Arago, 1968
  • Somali (F03) 1948
  • Somali (F703) 1951
  • Somali (A607) 1956
Fate: 31 August 1972 Returned to the United States of America
General characteristics [1]
Class and type: Cannon-class destroyer escort
  • 1,240 long tons (1,260 t) standard
  • 1,620 long tons (1,646 t) full
  • 306 ft (93 m) o/a
  • 300 ft (91 m) w/l
Beam: 36 ft 10 in (11.23 m)
Draft: 8 ft 9 in (2.67 m)
Propulsion: 4 × GM Mod. 16-278A diesel engines with electric drive, 6,000 shp (4,474 kW), 2 screws
Speed: 21 knots (39 km/h; 24 mph)
Range: 10,800 nmi (20,000 km) at 12 kn (22 km/h; 14 mph)
Complement: 15 officers and 201 enlisted

Somali, was a frigate in the Free French Naval Forces during World War II and the French Navy post-war. The ship was originally built as USS Somali (DE-111), an American Cannon-class destroyer escort.[2]


World War II[edit]

During World War II, Somali was transferred to the Free French Naval Forces under lend lease on 9 April 1944, and retained the name Somali. Ownership of the vessel was transferred to France on 21 April 1952 under the Mutual Defense Assistance Program.

Somali would take join TG 80.6 in Operation Anvil-Dragoon in August 1944.[3]

First Indochina War[edit]

In August 1945, Somali arrived in French Indochina to help in the area. Somali was sent to Nhabe, Soirap, Vaico and Bing Trung. Somali also visited Saigon and Singapore to help restore French rule in these areas. On 25 January 1946, Somali participated in Operation Gaur.[3]

Post War[edit]

In 1956 Somali was disarmed and used as an experimental ship with the hull number changed to A607. On 1 January 1968 Somali was renamed Arago.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "ex-Somali (DE 111)". Retrieved 23 April 2015.
  2. ^ "Destroyer Escorts built for the Free French". Retrieved 24 April 2015.
  3. ^ a b c "SOMALI - destroyer d'escorte - Classe "CANNON"". Retrieved 24 April 2015.

External links[edit]

  • Photo gallery of 'Arago (A-607)/Somali (F-703)/Somali' (DE-111) at NavSource Naval History