Fred.Olsen’s new trimaran ‘Bajamar Express’, on voyage from Australia to the Canary Islands, requested support from EU NAVFOR Somalia’s Operation Atalanta for her passage through the Internationally Recommended Transit Corridor.
EU NAVFOR covers the Southern Red Sea, Gulf of Aden and a large part of the Western Indian Ocean.
The initiative was inaugurated by the EU in December, 2008 to deter piracy. Its mandate also includes the monitoring of fishing activity off the Somali coast, protecting vessels operated by the World Food Programme and the African Union Mission in Somalia and supporting other organisations and missions working to strengthen maritime security and capacity in the region.
In normal circumstances, EU NAVFOR operates with around 600 personnel, one to three surface combat vessels and one to two maritime patrol aircraft.
Following two days crossing the area under escort by the Spanish frigate ‘ESPS Santa Maria’, the trimaran headed for the Suez Canal.