On Monday 16 November, EU Naval Force warship, HNLMS Groningen, handed over the protection of UN FAO vessel, MV Comarco Kestrel, to ITS Carabiniere.
MV Comarco Kestrel is currently sailing north along the Somali coast deploying fishing aggregating devices (FADs). The FADs will help to improve the livelihoods of Somali fishermen by creating artificial reefs to attract fish.
Getting straight into action, ITS Carabiniere welcomed aboard local Somali fishermen, as well as UN FAO representatives, so that they could witness the laying of the fifth FAD – a total of 25 FADs will be laid over the coming weeks.
As part of the European Union’s comprehensive approach to the Horn of Africa, since December 2008 EU warships and maritime patrol aircraft have been deterring and disrupting acts of piracy and strengthening maritime security off the coast of Somalia.
The protection of the UN FAO vessel against potential pirate attack is assisting the UN’s efforts to develop sustainable fishing grounds for local fishing communities.