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Tuesday, 22 May 2018

EU naval forces & Kenyan maritime authorities conducting joint exercises

Senior Kenyan and European officials are today meeting in Mombasa where the flagship of the European Union's Atalanta operation, the ITS Carlos Margottini, is making a port visit. Kenya's National Assembly is represented by members of its Defence and Foreign Relations Committee, led by its chairman Hon. Katoo Ole Metito. The ITS Carlos Margottini, alongside the Spanish Warship ESPS Meteoro, is tackling piracy and armed robbery off the Somalian coast. European Union naval forces are also working with other organisations to strengthen maritime security and protect vulnerable shipping in the Horn of Africa and in the Western Indian Ocean. Since its launch in 2008 the Atalanta naval force, in co-operation with her counter-piracy partners, has become highly effective in preventing attacks before they happen. At the height of Somali piracy in January 2011, 736 hostages and 32 ships were being held by pirates. Crews held hostage by pirates often faced a prolonged period of captivity, the average being 5 months, with some hostages were held for almost three years. By October 2016 no hostages and ships were being held. Today the EU naval force works in a collaborative way with partners such as Combined Maritime Forces as well as other nations' counter-piracy task forces including China, India and Russia.

Source: Africa Newsroom