EUNavFor Med successes


In the just on six months it has been underway, EU Naval Force Med’s Operation Sophia has removed 46 boats and reported 43 people to Italian authorities as suspected people smugglers.

This was revealed last week when the force held its first shared awareness and de-confliction (SHADE) meeting for the Mediterranean Sea.

Opening the meeting Rear Admiral Enrico Credendino, EUNavFor Med operation commander, said: “This kind of initiative allows better understanding between civilian and military actors involved in the Mediterranean theatre, enhancing interactions and developing synergies in the overall framework of outreach activities and operations in the area”.

More than 80 people representing governments and armed forces of Mediterranean coastal states, the UN, EU and non-government organisations involved in sea rescue operations attend the meeting.

All are involved in responding to the challenges posed by “irregular migration” across the Mediterranean. This is done by either fulfilling international obligations as regards the rescue of people in distress or taking action to disrupt the smugglers’ business model to prevent further loss of life at sea.
“SHADE is expected to become a regular rendezvous where participants explain their actions with a view to further co-ordinating efforts in the Mediterranean,” EUNavFor Med deputy operation commander, Rear Admiral Herve Blejean said at the conclusion of the meeting.