EU Navfor completes 100th African Union Mission in Somalia escort


The European Union Naval Force (EU Navfor) has completed its one hundredth escort of an African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) vessel, since escorts began in February 2009.

EU Navfor reached the milestone on Thursday, the organisation has announced. Since operations began, no vessels carrying food aid to Somalia have been attacked.
“The successful completion of the one hundredth escort of an AMISOM sustainment shipment today marks a significant milestone for the European Naval Force in Somalia,” said EU Navfor Operation Commander Major General F H R ‘Buster’ Howes OBE, on completion of the 100th escort.
“The protection of humanitarian and other vulnerable shipping against the scourge of piracy is central to my mission and is of direct benefit to the well-being of the Somali people and the success of the Transitional Federal Government” Howes added. “I am extremely proud of the men and women of European Navies who prosecute this essential, if unglamorous task”

As part of the EU/United Nations co-operation, EU Navfor is providing protection to the UN chartered vessels supplying the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).

AMISOM conducts peace support operations in Somalia in order to stabilise the situation in the country in order to create conditions for the conduct of Humanitarian activities and an immediate take over by the United Nations.

The first AMISOM escort took place on February 6, 2009, with the vessel departing Djibouti and arriving in Mogadishu.

The EU Navfor is undertaking Operation Atalanta, the main task of which is to escort merchant vessels carrying humanitarian aid of the World Food Program (WFP) and vessels of African Union Mission in Somalia. However, EU Navfor plays a big role in protecting vulnerable vessels in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean by deterring and disrupting piracy. The organisation also monitors fishing activity off the Somali coast.