Swedish Coast Guard’s first mission for EU NAVFORMarch 10, 2010 - 17:30
On Monday 8th March, the Swedish Coast guard Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA) conducted its first formal mission for EU NAVFOR’s anti piracy operation – Atalanta.
During the next four months one of the Swedish Coast Guard aircraft, a DASH 8, will monitor the waters off the coast of Somalia providing the Force Commander with essential information on the movements of ships in the area.
The Swedish Project Manager of the MPA in Seychelles stated “We have just completed our first flight within the EU NAVFOR and we were in the air for around 6 hours. The flight was diverted because of suspicious activity in a particular area and It turned out to be suspect pirates who were remaining close to a fishing vessel. We were able to alert the Force Commander and document the incident.”
This is the first time a MPA from the Swedish Coast Guard has participated in an international operation of this type. The MPA is a DASH-8 Q-300 equipped with several advanced surveillance systems that makes it one of the worlds’s most advanced sea surveillance aircraft. The MPA is manned by a civilian crew.
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 AMISOM, and to protect vulnerable ships 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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