European Union External Action

New Force Commander of Operation Atalanta - Rear Admiral Simone Malvagna .

18/04/2018 - 08:43
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On board his flagship, ITN Carlo Margottini, Rear Admiral Simone Malvagna (Italian Navy) assumed the role of Force Commander of EUNAVFOR Somalia Operation Atalanta, the EU's counter-piracy operation on Thursday 5 April 2018.

With his embarked Force HQ, Rear Admiral Simone Malvagna has tactical command of Operation Atalanta warships and maritime patrol aircraft (MPRA) as they conduct counter-piracy patrols in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean over the next four months.

During the ceremony, Rear Admiral Malvagna said: “We have embarked onto the Flagship Margottini to continue this vital operation, let us remember that our main mission is to deter, prevent and repress piracy and also to protect World Food Programme shipping” he added: “we share this determination with our partners in the Combined Maritime Forces and look forward to close cooperation, coordination and interoperability.”

Operation Atalanta was launched in December 2008 and is part of the European Union’s efforts to counter Somali-based piracy and to ensure the safety of transiting merchant shipping especially World Food Programme vessels delivering humanitarian aid to Somali ports.

Other key roles for Operation Atalanta warships are to monitor fishing activities off the Somali coast and to support EU sister missions that are working to strengthen maritime security and capacities of regional states in the Horn of Africa.