The corvette Ludwigshafen was this week replaced as the German navy representative in the EUNavFor Med operation by the frigate Karlsruhe.
She spent just over two months as part of the European mission talking human smuggling and trafficking networks in the central Mediterranean Sea.
Just on 50 days were spent at sea during which the vessels conducted various flag enquiries to transiting vessels to collect information about suspicious vessels and smuggling activities. Ludwigshafen was also part of a number of rescue operations which saw more than 500 boat migrants saved.
In his farewell message to the ship’s company EUNavFor med commander Rear Admiral Enrico Credendino said they made a significant contribution to the operation in challenging circumstances where “a most professional performance” was marked by adaptability and perseverance.
EUNavFor Med became a reality in June last year after the European Council decided to mobilise all efforts to prevent further loss of life at sea in the wake of number incidents of boat migrants drowning. It further decided to fight human traffickers and smugglers.
The overall aim of the operation is to undertake systematic efforts to identify, capture and dispose of vessels and other assets used or suspected of being used by migrant smugglers or traffickers.