Commander EU NAVFOR visits CTF 151August 28, 2009 - 11:42
USS ANZIO (CG 68), Gulf of Aden – On Wednesday 26th of August the commander of the European Union Naval Force Somalia, Commodore Pieter Bindt RNLN (CTF 465) met with Rear Admiral.
Scott Sanders USN, Commander of the Combined Task Force 151 (CTF 151) on board the CTF 151 flagship USS ANZIO (CG68). The meeting was held to deepen the cooperation between the two task forces to deter, disrupt and suppress piracy on the waters surrounding Somalia.
Established in December 2008, EU NAVFOR is an European Union Task Force established to protect vessels of the World Food Programme (WFP) delivering food aid to displaced persons in Somalia, to protect vulnerable vessels sailing through the Gulf of Aden and off the Somali coast and to deter, prevent and repress acts of piracy and armed robbery off the Somali coast, including arrest.
Presently, there are approximately 30 ships from 17 different nations conducting counter-piracy operations off the coast of Somalia as part of EU NAVFOR, NATO, CTF 151, or independently, like China, Russia, Malaysia and India. These naval forces have a common goal: to actively deter, disrupt and suppress acts of piracy. The outbreak of piracy and its threat to commerce, regional security, and perhaps most importantly, freedom of navigation is something that leaders worldwide are concerned about.
Force Commander of EU NAVFOR and CTF 151 emphasized that cooperation is the key to successful counter-piracy in the region. “,” said Sanders. “What is amazing is that a Japanese maritime patrol aircraft (MPA) detects a suspect skiff, then a Dutch helicopter from EU NAVFOR unit HNLMS Evertsen does an interception and Norwegian fast boats from EU NAVFOR unit HNOMS FRIDTJOF NANSEN conducts the actual boarding,” said Bindt. “You can read about this, but when you see it actually happening, the level of cooperation is remarkable.”
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