The Cyprus National Guard Naval Command acquired the following vessels during this period:
The Cyprus National Guard Naval Command had the following bases of operation during this period:
The Cyprus National Guard had the following anti-aircraft armaments during this period:
On the 6th of August 1964, Cyprus National Guard forces commenced combat action against the Turkish Cypriot enclave of Kokkina, in the north-west of Cyprus. This operation was regarded by both Cyprus and Greece as a necessary interdiction against a perceived threat by Turkish Cypriot militia, who were allegedly using Kokkina as a beachhead by which to land supplies and weapons shipped from Turkey. The Cyprus National Guard forces were under the command of General George Grivas, with the blessing of Athens. A combined land and sea attack was launched against Kokkina using at least two R-41 patrol boats, one of which was known to be the "Phaethon". Firing 40mm and 20mm shells, the two patrol boats bombarded the enclave for a period of time, in conjunction with land-based 25-pounder artillery.
The battle was well underway on the 8th of August, when the Turkish Air Force commenced its own interdiction operation with fighter aircraft, making numerous strafing passes of Greek Cypriot forces. The vessel "Phaethon" was struck by rocket fire to the engine and burst into flames, forcing the crew to deliberately run it aground near Xeros harbour. As the attack on the patrol boat continued, a Turkish F-100 Super Sabre, 55-2766, piloted by Captain Cengiz Topel, was struck by 40mm anti-aircraft fire and shot-down. The pilot ejected over land but was promptly captured and lynched by members of the Cyprus National Guard. The "Phaethon" was unsalvagable and later stricken. Several of its crew were killed or wounded.
A second R-41 patrol boat, identified as either the T-1 or T-2 by some sources, was attacked by the same Turkish fighter jet formations, and was reportedly struck several times by strafing fire.
On the 15th of July 1974, EOKA-B and elements of the Cyprus National Guard overthrew the legitimate President, Archbishop Makarios and replaced him with Nikos Sampson. Makarios escaped an initial attempt to capture him at the Archbishiporic in Nicosia, and fled to Paphos. A naval patrol vessel (possibly an R-41) called the "Leventis" was quickly dispatched to Paphos to begin shelling a radio station there which was being operated by pro-Makarios elements.
On the 20th of July 1974, Turkey invaded Cyprus in a surprise-attack, without issuing a declaration of war. A naval force of Turkish vessels was detected by coastal radar at Apostolos Andreas approaching the coast, and a second force of naval vessels was sighted off the coast of Kyrenia during the early hours. The Cyprus National Guard Naval Command quickly ordered its two motor torpedo boats, the T-1 and the T-3, based at Kyrenia, to attack the Turkish flotilla directly. Both vessels were promptly sunk by combined air and sea attack. Two more motor torpedo boats, the T-11 and T-12, were captured intact at Boghazi when the harbour was overrun by Turkish forces during the invasion.
The Cyprus National Guard Naval Command and Cyprus Marine Police operate a large number of small patrol and fast-attack craft, the majority of displacement less than 100 tons. These types include:
The Cyprus National Guard Naval Command also operates an unspecified number of coastal-batteries and radars for a contingent of MBDA MM-40 Exocet Block-II anti-ship missiles. The Naval Command also has access to Mistral-SIMBAD very-short range surface-air missiles, as well as infiltration craft intended for Naval Special Forces.
During peacetime, the main roles of the Cyprus National Guard Naval Command and Cyprus Marine Police are:
The main combined-arms war games, held on an annual basis, are codenamed "Nikiphoros" and are intended to maintain the Cypriot naval forces as a war-fighting force.
In order to assist in the protection of the coastline (that which is under Government control), the Cyprus National Guard Naval Command is in possession of an integrated coastal radar system produced by Elbit Systems of Israel.
The Cypriot Naval Special Forces are known as "OYK" and are an underwater demolitions team similar in concept and deployment to SEAL's. Very little is publicly known about the OYK or their operations, except that recruitment is performed on a bi-annual basis.
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