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The command structure of EUNAFOR Med. A Frenchman on board…

The Cavour (credit: Italian Navy)
The Cavour (credit: Italian Navy)

(BRUSSELS2 - exclusive) The command system for the European operation in the Mediterranean against human traffickers (EUNAVFOR Med) is taking shape. And B2 can thus lift the veil on this device which should be announced on Monday.

The Franco-Italian at the controls

Along with Vice Admiral Enrico Credendino (announced in preview on the Club: The Head of Operation EUNAVFOR Med soon to be appointed. His proposed name. Biography), who will command the operation, we should find a Frenchman well known to B2 readers: the rear-admiral, Herve Blejean. Last commander of the Jeanne (d'Arc), he commanded the EU anti-piracy force (EUNAVFOR Atalanta) from December 2013 to April 2014 aboard the TCD Siroco. Today, it serves as the international relations coordination authority for the Navy General Staff. He was an auditor of the 62nd session of the IHEDN. He could soon become vice-admiral.

General Staff: in Rome

The Operation Headquarters (OHQ) should be located in Rome, at the Centocelle military airport, and not co-located at the Practica di Mare base of the Guardia Di Finanza, which houses the Frontex operation, or at MRCC of Rome of the Coast Guard, as one might have thought for a moment. There is an explanation, or rather two. On the one hand, it is a question of clearly distinguishing the two operations - one is civil - with military means - with the vocation of rescue and rescue at sea, the other military and police with the objective of fighting against traffickers ( even if the interactions between the two operations will exist). On the other hand, the "designated" and approved OHQ for European operations is that of Centocelle.

Italian Tactical Command

The tactical commander of the force deployed at sea and in the air will be an Italian. Which confirms our latest information of an "Italian double". The commander of the force at sea should be according to our information, Rear Admiral Andrea Gueglio, which commands the second Italian naval group, based in Taranto. He should officiate aboard the aircraft carrier Cavour (D-550), the flagship of the Italian Navy, which could be the FHQ of the operation.

Information resources

The operation will benefit from means provided by the various countries in observation, intelligence and analysis. The French should thus provide a maritime patrol aircraft (Atlantic 2 or Falcon type) as well as "finished products" of intelligence coming from different sources (air, sea, submarine...). The Belgians should take advantage of the presence of the Godetia on the spot to also provide intelligence. Luxembourgers should make available a Swearingen Merlin IIIC aircraft of the same type and from the same company (CAE Aviation) as that made available to EUNAVFOR Atalanta (read: Luxembourg planes. They are back…). etc

(Nicolas Gros-Verheyde)

Read also: EUNAVFOR Med launched on Monday. A big ears operation first

All articles on this operation carry the keyword EUNAVFOR Med


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).