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The guided-missile cruiser USS Vicksburg was the first U.S. Navy ship to refuel at the new Defense Fuel Supply Point in the Port of Doraleh, Djibouti, according to a Navy news release.

Until the station opened Sunday, the Navy had leased several fuel storage tanks from the Djibouti supply point. By having a fuel facility available close to the crossroads of major shipping lanes, the Navy hopes to increase the flexibility of its forces, the Navy 5th Fleet news release stated.

A refueling hub in the Horn of Africa provides an invaluable logistical asset to the Navy’s fight against piracy and other illegal activities in the region, Vice Adm. Patrick Walsh, commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command Bahrain, said in the statement.

The Vicksburg, stationed in Mayport, Fla., deployed to the 5th Fleet area of operations on Jan. 25.

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