Serbian Maritime Protection Team Awarded EU Operation Atalanta Medal for Keeping WFP Vessel Safe from Pirates off Coast of SomaliaSeptember 20, 2016 - 10:09
On 18 September 2016 Operation Atalanta’s Serbian maritime protection team was awarded the Common Security and Defence Policy service medal in recognition of their outstanding work off the coast of Somalia as part of the EU’s counter-piracy Operation Atalanta.
The Serbian maritime protection team has been aboard the World Food Programme (WFP) chartered vessel, MSM Douro, for the past six months. Their role has been to ensure that the WFP vessel, which carries much-needed humanitarian aid for displaced people in Somalia, remains safe from any pirate attack.
The medal ceremony was held aboard counter-piracy flagship, HNLMS Tromp, with the medals presented by the Operation Atalanta Force Commander, Dutch Commodore René Luyckx.
The Master of MSM Douro, Michal Jaszczolt, was delighted to be invited on board to see the men who had protected his ship receive their medals.
In addressing the Serbian team on the Dutch frigate’s flight deck, Commodore Luyckx said that they should be rightly proud because due to their hard work and dedication they have ensured that food and other humanitarian aid arrived safely in Somali ports.
Following the ceremony, the Serbian team returned to MSM Douro to continue their protection duties and HNLMS Tromp resumed her counter-piracy patrols that are helping to ensure that piracy remains suppressed off the coast of Somalia.
The Serbian team will remain aboard the WFP ship for a few more weeks, until another team takes over this important role.
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