19 February 2013

Seychelles: EU Navfor and the Seychelles to Continue Co-Operating Against Piracy in the Region

press release

On 12 February 2013, during a port visit by the EU Naval Force (EU NAVFOR) Somalia - Operation Atalanta flagship ESPS Méndez Núnez to Port Victoria in the Seychelles, the EUNAVFOR Force Commander, Rear Admiral Pedro García de Paredes, met the Chief of Defence of the Seychelles People's Defence Forces, Brigadier Leopold Payet, and the Chief of the Seychelles Coast Guard, Lieutenant Colonel Georges Adeline.

During this meeting, Rear Admiral García de Paredes stressed the importance of maintaining the good co-operation between EU NAVFOR and the Seychelles to counter piracy off the coast of Somalia.

Both the Force Commander and Brigadier Payet agreed that although piracy in the area appears to be on the decline, it is imperative that naval forces and merchant shipping alike remain vigilant.

Following this meeting, the Seychelles Minister of Foreign Affairs, Jean-Paul Adam, along with the ambassador of Spain, Miguel Fernandez-Palacios Martínez, the British High Commissioner, Lindsay Skoll, the ambassador of France, Geneviève Lancu, and the Secretary of State in the Seychelles Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Barry Faure, came on board the EU NAVFOR flagship, ESPS Méndez Núnez, to attend a talk followed by a discussion about the current situation off Somalia and the work of Operation Atalanta.

During the port visit the Force Commander took the opportunity to visit the EU NAVFOR Swedish and Luxembourg Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Aircraft (MPRA) Detachments based in the Seychelles.

These MPRAs play an essential part in the EU counter-piracy mission by gathering and providing intelligence information and pictures.

Rear Admiral García de Paredes thanked the commanders of the MPRA Detachments for their outstanding contribution to Operation Atalanta.

On 14 February, Rear Admiral García de Paredes visited the Seychelles Coast Guard Operations Centre. It is in this centre where the Seychelles Coast Guard controls and monitors the situation within the Seychelles' Economic Exclusion Zone, which is more than 1.3 million square kilometres.

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