EU navies take up position in Mediterranean
Italy’s largest aircraft carrier, the Cavour, is spearheading an EU-led naval operation to monitor and then crush migrant smugglers in the Mediterranean.
More than a dozen military assets including warships, helicopters, reconnaissance planes, submarines, and drones are also moving into position near Libya as part of a risky operation called EUnavfor Med.
Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and the UK are supplying the weapons.
The formal announcement comes just two days after World Refugee day.
The EU is hoping for a UN Security Council resolution to scale up its operation, allowing EUnavfor Med to move into Libyan waters, but is meeting resistance from China and Russia.
It also wants a unity government formed in Libya to help resolve the issue.
With up to 1,000 people taking part, EUnavfor Med is to cost the EU €11.8 million over its first two months. It is based in Rome and will be in full swing sometime early July.
I didn’t know there was an ‘EU Navy’ – but it seems the EU decided on May 18th to ‘set one up‘
As for EUNavfor – it’s explained here:
EUNAVFOR Med is the European Union naval operation to be launched in order to disrupt the business model of human smugglers for the Mediterranean Sea, where NATO is conducting Operation ACTIVE ENDEAVOUR, its counter-terrorism operation.
Under NATO’s Operation ACTIVE ENDEAVOUR, ships are patrolling the Mediterranean and monitoring shipping to help deter, defend, disrupt and protect against terrorist activities. In addition to monitoring suspect vessels, the Operation aims to build a picture of maritime activity in the Mediterranean. To this end, ships in patrol conduct routine information approaches to the various merchant vessels in order to reassure the mariners on the efforts to keep the sea safe, protect shipping and control suspect vessels.
Hmm – Costa Condordia was bad enough….