Piraterie — Malta joins EU NAVFOR in fight against pirates

Mal­ta, which already has an offi­cer work­ing in the Oper­a­tional HQ at North­wood, will increase her con­tri­bu­tion in the fight against pira­cy off Soma­lia with the pro­vi­sion of a Ves­sel Pro­tec­tion Detach­ment (VPD) from April to July, 2010.

AFM sol­dier on anti-pira­cy look­out on board the EU NAVFOR Dutch War­ship

The 12-man VPD will be embarked onboard Her Nether­lands Majesty‘s ship Johan de Witt dur­ing its four months in the EU NAVFOR mis­sion. This is Malta‘s first mil­i­tary deploy­ment into the oper­a­tional the­atre under the EU Com­mon Secu­ri­ty Defence Pol­i­cy (CSDP). The Mal­tese detach­ment has been sourced from a Spe­cial Duties Com­pa­ny of the Armed Forces of Mal­ta (AFM).

Mal­ta recent­ly signed a Mem­o­ran­dum of Under­stand­ing with the Nether­lands where­by it has been agreed that the VPD will pro­vide close pro­tec­tion to ships assigned and they will also con­tribute, as nec­es­sary, to Key Lead­er­ship Engage­ment, Capac­i­ty Build­ing and Secu­ri­ty Tasks under­tak­en by “Johan de Witt”.

EU NAVFOR Soma­lia – Oper­a­tion ATALANTA’s main tasks are to escort mer­chant ves­sels car­ry­ing human­i­tar­i­an aid of the ‘World Food Pro­gram’ (WFP) and ves­sels of AMISOM, and to pro­tect vul­ner­a­ble ships in the Gulf of Aden and Indi­an Ocean and to deter and dis­rupt pira­cy. EUNAVFOR also mon­i­tors fish­ing activ­i­ty off the coast of Soma­lia.

Press release