EU Naval Force reported today that the Spanish Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV), ESPS Relámpago joined its force to perform counter-piracy patrols off the coast of Somalia. Contributing to Operation Atalanta, ESPS Relámpago is the new Spanish contribution in place of ESPS Tornado which is now on her way home.
ESPS Relámpago and her 83 crew will be part of the EU Naval Force for four months.
Deputy Commander of EU Naval Force, Rear Admiral Bartolomé Bauzá said, “I am very pleased to see Spain’s ongoing contribution to Operation Atalanta. Even though there has been a decrease in pirate attacks over the past year, I am very much aware that the threat is still present. It is important that we remain vigilant and maintain our efforts in helping to keep the waters of the Gulf of Aden and Western Indian Ocean safe for seafarers.”
EU NAVFOR said this is the second time ESPS Relámpago has joined the EU Force as it also participated in the operation in 2012.
EU Naval Force currently has four ships and three aircraft in its area of operations.