Unity of Effort between EU and NATO in counter piracyDecember 13, 2011 - 17:10
Deputy Commander Operation ATALANTA Rear Admiral Christian Canova and newly appointed EUNAVFOR Force Commander Captain Jorge Manso paid a visit to NATO Operation Ocean Shield Force Commander, RADM Sinan Azmi Tosun, onboard his Flagship TCG Giresun. With representatives of NATO and coalition Counter-Piracy Task Forces in attendance, the change of Command ceremony of the EUNAVFOR Force Commander held in Djibouti on December 6th on board EUNAVFOR Flagship, FGS Bayern, was an opportunity to display unity of effort between key counter piracy actors.
Following the change of command ceremony Admiral Canova and the new EUNAVFOR Force Commander Captain Jorge Manso Revilla called on the Force Commander of the NATO Task Force, Rear Admiral Sinan Azmi Tosun on board TCG Giresun in Djibouti Harbour. Although short, the visit was extremely positive and provided both Admiral Canova and Admiral Tosun the opportunity to discuss the vitally important exchange of operational information and the opportunities for mutual support between EUNAVFOR and the NATO Task Force. The very close cooperation in the use of Maritime Patrol Aircraft over the past few months was a perfect example.
Notwithstanding their political mandates differ, the two organizations share the common goal of eradicating the threat of piracy off the Horn of Africa and the effective sharing of information and intelligence is a key tool in ensuring situational awareness. Similarly, each organization has much to learn from the other on lessons learned after significant events.
Against the backdrop of a deteriorating humanitarian situation in the Horn of Africa, mutual support and cooperation is key to ensuring that aid shipments reach those mostly affected by famine without being pirated. Protection of World Food Program shipments to Somalia is of vital importance to both the NATO and EU missions and each is keen to seize any opportunity which will contribute to the success of those shipments and recognised effective communications as key to achieving this.
The Commanders agreed that meetings that each had with Somali representatives were key to success and that their planned programmes were entirely complementary. Sharing the outcomes of those meetings had clear potential for mutual benefit in the future.
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