Eritrea (colonial ship)
The Italian colonial ship Eritrea (named officially nave appoggio Eritrea in the Italian Navy) was constructed in the Castellammare Shipyards near Napoli. Construction started in 1935 and she was commissioned in 1937. She served mainly in the Indian and western Pacific Oceans
The Eritrea (2,170 tons displacement) was constructed for duties as a typical "colonial ship" and was sometimes referred to as a "sloop." She had a novel diesel-electric machinery outfit designed to maximise range.
She was armed with four 120 mm guns, two 40 mm guns, and two 13.2 mm machine guns. The ship also had an extensive engineering workshop on board and could provide repair support to Italian submarines based in East Africa.
A modified sister ship to be called Etiopia was planned, but cancelled on the outbreak of war.
Following Italy's declaration of war on 10 June 1940, colonial ship Eritrea became part of the Italian Royal Navy (Regia Marina). Eritrea was part of the Italian Navy's Red Sea Flotilla located at the port of Massawa in Eritrea.