UK Members of Parliament visit EU NAVFORMarch 17, 2010 - 17:10
On the afternoon of Wednesday 17th March EU NAVFOR hosted a visit by two Shadow Ministers from the UK House of Commons.
Mr Julian Brazier MP, Shadow Minister for Transport (Aviation and Shipping), and Dr Julian Lewis MP, Shadow Defence Minister, were greeted by Rear Admiral Peter Hudson, Operational Commander of EU NAVFOR Somalia – Operation ATALANTA. The MPs were given a tour of the new Operational Headquarters building, specifically designed for Operations and into which EU NAVFOR moved recently. During their visit they were given a briefing on the operation and EU NAVFOR’s fight against piracy, visiting the Joint Operations Centre (JOC) which also houses the Maritime Security Centre Horn of Africa (MSCHOA).
The MPs had the opportunity to meet several of the international staff from many EU member states, including the civilian Merchant Navy representatives who work within MSCHOA. Mr Brazier said, “We are extremely impressed with what we have seen today. The EU NAVFOR has achieved a really impressive reduction in the number of hijacks in the Gulf of Aden.”
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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