On Tuesday, February 14, 2023, a flag-raising ceremony was held at the Pomeranian Quay in Gdynia for the ORP Mewa ship. This is the third mine countermeasure vessel of the Kormoran II type project 258 built at Remontowa Shipbuilding in Gdańsk. The ship was thus ceremonially incorporated into the service of the Polish Navy.
The event was attended, among others, by Secretary of State, Head of the National Security Bureau Jacek Siewiera, Deputy Head of the National Security Bureau Major General Dariusz Łukowski, Commander of the Special Forces Component Major General Sławomir Drumowicz, Vice Admiral Jarosław Ziemiański – Inspector of the Navy, Gen. Lieutenant General Wiesław Kukuła – Commander General of the Armed Forces, Rear Admiral Jarosław Wypijewski – Director of the Department of Armed Forces Supervision in the National Security Bureau, Commander of the Maritime Operations Centre / Maritime Component Wojciech Sowa, Andrzej Ogrodnik – Commander of the 3rd Ship Flotilla, Piotr Sikora – Commander of the 8th Coastal Defence Flotilla, Commander of the Provincial Police Headquarters in Gdańsk Chief Inspector Andrzej Łapiński.
The shipbuilding industry was represented by, among others: Adam Ruszkowski – CEO of Remontowa Holding, Marcin Ryngwelski – CEO of Remontowa Shipbuilding, CEO of OBR CTM Marcin Wisniewski and Paweł Lulewicz – CEO of PGZ Naval Shipyard. Also present was the ship’s godmother Anna Kulagin.
The ceremony was open to the public and brought together many Gdynia and surrounding area inhabitants.
During the ceremony, BBN Chief Jacek Siewiera handed over the war flag to the ship’s commander, Cmdr Lt. Bartosz Blaszke, and the Navy pennant to the deputy commander, Marta Grządziela. The head of the BBN also read out a letter from the President of the Republic of Poland, Andrzej Duda, in which he thanked the entities of the Polish shipbuilding industry behind the success of the Kormoran II type mine destroyers.
A few words were also addressed to the participants of the event by Deputy Prime Minister Mariusz Błaszczak. In a letter read by Łukasz Kudlicki, Director of the National Centre for Research and Development, he emphasised the significance of the ceremony, which marks another step towards building Poland’s potential in the Baltic Sea.
ORP Mewa is the third in a series of modern mine destroyers to be delivered to Gdynia’s 13th minesweeper squadron, which is part of the 8th Coastal Defence Flotilla. The first in the series, ORP Kormoran, entered service on 28 November 2017. The second of the series, ORP Albatros raised the flag on 28 November 2022.
Photos: Michał Pietrzak