EU NAVFOR Force multiplierAugust 18, 2010 - 17:26
Focus on the Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Aircrafts, constantly operating for EU NAVFOR – Somalia in cooperation with warships.
On the airfield of French Air Force Base of Djibouti – Base Aerienne 188, the Portuguese, Spanish and French MPRAs are ready to take off (picture).
Their main mission is to fly over the theatre of operation, detect suspicious skiffs, and guide warships to their position. They are also able to collect intelligence on some specific areas. The aircrafts are equipped with several advanced surveillance systems which significantly enhance EU NAVFOR’s Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) capability in the Somali Basin and in the Gulf of Aden. Their speed and high level of endurance make them a key asset in a wide area comparable to that of the Mediterranean Sea.
Until this date, the MPRAs of Luxembourg, Spain, France, Germany, Sweden and Portugal have been operating together with EU NAVFOR warships. The MPRAs usually take off from Djibouti, Mombasa (Kenya) or Port Victoria (Seychelles).
EU NAVFOR Somalia – Operation ATALANTA’s main tasks are to escort merchant vessels carrying humanitarian aid of the World Food Program (WFP) and vessels of African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), and to protect vulnerable vessels in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean, and to deter and disrupt piracy. EU NAVFOR also monitors fishing activity off the coast of Somalia.
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