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Canadian-Danish relay at the head of the CTF 150

(B2) The Commodore Danish Per Bigum Christensen took over from its Canadian counterpart, the Commodore Bob Davidson at the head of CTF 150. The “Combined task force 150 (CTF150)”, present off the coast of Somalia since 2001, as part of the anti-terrorist coalition Enduring Freedom (immutable freedom), has recently extended its tasks to the fight against piracy.

Ship captains are on the front line against piracy

On August 22, a maritime security patrol zone was established, in support of the International Maritime Organization's (IMO) call for international assistance, to discourage attacks against commercial vessels transiting in the Gulf of Aden. « Our role in preventing some of these destabilizing activities is only part of the solution to preventing further attacks. says Per Bigum Christensen, the new commander of CTF-150. " Navigators must remain vigilant. A ship's captain and his crew are their own ship's first line of defense »

A few simple steps…

To deter attacks, he believes, a few simple measures are enough: keep increased surveillance for suspicious small boats operating in the vicinity of ships, increase speed and maneuver to avoid small boats, and even repel them with fire hoses.

... and private guards

U.S. Vice Admiral William E. Gortney — boss of the 5th US fleet (present in the Gulf) of the various combined maritime forces (CMF) — goes further. He suggests that the shipping industry “consider hiring security teams for their ships. « The coalition does not have the resources to provide 24-hour protection for the large number of merchant ships in the region. Shipping companies must take action to defend their ships and crews »

A command by rotation

Present in the Strait of Hormuz, the Gulf of Aden, the Gulf of Oman, the Arabian Sea, the Indian Ocean and the Red Sea, the CTF 150 is commanded in turn by the ships that make it up. The main participants today are Canadians who have sent a fleet of four ships – two helicopter-carrying frigates. Calgary et Quebec city, a helicopter carrier destroyer Iroquois and the oil tanker Protective. France (Aviso Cdt Birot), Germany, Pakistan, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the United States also participate.

(Nicolas Gros-Verheyde)

Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).

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