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Israeli Frigate Sold to Ceylon Reported to Be En Route to Colombo

The second of two Israeli frigates sold to Ceylon, the Mizhak, was en route today to Colombo where a Ceylonese crew will take over the vessel from its Israel crew. Several Israeli instructors will remain to train the Ceylonese crew and the other Israelis will return home. The Miznak left Israel last Thursday night and crossed the Tiran Straits separating the Gulf of Akaba from the Red Sea at sunrise.

The first ship, the Mivtach, left for Ceylon last year after several months of political debate touched off by refusal of the United Arab Republic to allow a Ceylonese crew to enter the Gulf of Elath where the two frigates were stationed. The impasses was broken when an Israel crew sailed the Mivtach to the Indian Ocean where it was taken over by a Ceylonese crew.