Members of the Slovak military police have traveled to Germany to prepare for their deployment to the EUNAVFOR-led Mediterranean Sea operation Sophia.
A team of 10 have been training with German Navy Marines (Seebatallion) since January 30 and will spend the rest of this month preparing for the deployment.
After the preparations conclude on March 31, they will embark a German Navy ship to become part of a German boarding team deployed to operation Sophia.
Apart from theoretical basics, the team are practicing helicopter and speedboat transferring, small and large vessel boarding, deck inspections and shooting skills.
Slovakia became a EU member in 2004 and has pledged to help tackle illegal people-smuggling and contribute to rescue missions in the southern Mediterranean Sea.
Operation Sophia was launched by the European Council in May 2015 to disrupt human smuggling and trafficking in the southern part of the Mediterranean. As of June 2016 the Council expanded the operation mandate with two auxiliary tasks: to enforce the UN arms embargo on Libya, and to train Libyan forces for coast protection.[Read more]