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Grafton's ex-CO is honoured

PUBLISHED: 11:04 19 February 2002 | UPDATED: 11:22 03 March 2010

HMS Grafton's former commanding officer has been awarded the French Croix de Valeur Militare for his role in a peace keeping operation in the Adriatic four years' ago.

HMS Grafton's former commanding officer has been awarded the French Croix de Valeur Militare for his role in a peace keeping operation in the Adriatic four years' ago.

Commander Bob Sanguinetti was in charge of Grafton – the adopted warship of Ipswich – during French-led coalition operations in the Adriatic off the coast of Yugoslavia in 1998. Commander The Hon Michael Cochrane, who was in charge of another Royal Navy warship HMS Somerset, was also honoured at the ceremony in Paris.

Grafton and Somerset worked under the operational control of the French navy, providing the French aircraft carrier Foch with surface and sub-surface protection during her aircraft's bombing missions over Serbia.

The Queen has approved the award, which may be worn by the two men alongside any British honours.

British armed forces minister, Adam Ingram, said: "The award exemplifies how relations between France and Britain over the last 200 years have developed and further strengthens the ties that already exist between the French and Royal navies."

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