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Succession in the Indian Ocean

(B2) Spanish Rear Admiral Ricardo Hernandez took command of the EU maritime force against piracy on Saturday (9 March).

A small ceremony took place in the presence of General Charlie Stickland OBE, the operation commander, on the Spanish flagship ESPS Navarra. This is the 31st rotation of forces since the launch of the anti-piracy operation in December 2008. The ceremony was attended by the commander of the destroyer Samidare, of the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force, currently under the command of the multinational force CTF151, based in Bahrain.

« EU NAVFOR is more than ships. (It's) a maritime security capability network and you are the center of that network. » indicated General Stickland, these are his last days at the head of the operation. The senior British officer must, in fact, leave his post, Brexit obliges.

The anti-piracy operation currently has three ships: the ESPS Navarra (F-85), flagship, the Spanish high seas patrol boat ESPS Relampago (P-43) and the Italian frigate ITS Carlo Margottini (F-592) — which has just returned to the operation — as well as a Spanish P3 Orion maritime patrol aircraft, based in Djibouti.


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).