On 14 June 2010, Rear Admiral Hudson Peter Hudson CBE handed over the responsibility of Operation Commander of the European Union Naval Force Somalia, Op ATALANTA to Major General Buster Howes OBE. The handover was conducted in the Operational Headquarters in Northwood near London.
Rear Admiral Hudson, who joined the operation in June 2009, has been instrumental in the ongoing success of EU NAVFOR and the execution of the Op ATALANTA mission. Rear Admiral Hudson leaves EU NAVFOR to continue his appointment as Commander United Kingdom Maritime Force (COMUKMARFOR) in Portsmouth.
Major General Howes has extensive operational experience within the United Kingdom Amphibious Force and the multi-national environment. He served with the US Marine Corps in the First Gulf War and with the Rapid Reaction Force Operations staff of UNPROFOR in Bosnia. In 2007, he served as Chief Joint Coordination and Effects in HQ ISAF X in Kabul. His staff experience has been gained exclusively within the Joint and Naval Staffs, where he held the appointment as the 1-Star Director of the Naval Staff.