The last week of September saw the European Union (EU) NavFor Operation Atalanta reach the three million tons of food delivered to Somalia mark this year, notwithstanding the impact of the Russia/Ukraine conflict on food shortages and famine in, among others, the Horn of Africa.
All three million tons were aboard vessels monitored, escorted and protected by platforms detached to Operation Atalanta.
Since its activation in December 2008, Atalanta ensured delivery of more than ten and a half million tons of food in its entire area of operation. “Hopeful, especially when the consequences of the Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine further increased famine and suffering not only in the Horn of Africa, but in many Western Indian Ocean areas,” an Atalanta statement said.
“This milestone was reached thanks to WFP (World Food Programme) merchant vessels such as bulk carrier Brave Commander, which on 31 August became the first WFP ship in reaching a Horn of Africa port from Ukraine since the beginning of the war carrying much-needed grain to the region.
“The Atalanta level of co-operation with WFP officials always stressed the paramount importance of protection provided by the operation to food aid and other deliveries. EU NavFor remains committed to delivery of humanitarian aid across the region and welcomes positive perspectives to resume activities following high level contacts between the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs, Vice-President Josep Borrell and Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud,” according the statement.