RFA Lyme Bay has carried out the first of six friendly approaches in the Gulf of Aden. It was the first friendly approach carried out by a UK Royal Fleet Auxiliary Bay Class ship, as part of European Union Naval Force (EUNAVFOR) Somalia Operation Atalanta.
The ship’s boat team interacted with the local seafarers to gather information on fishing activities and the ‘pattern of life’ to sea.
Speaking about the interaction with seafarers, the Commanding Officer of RFA Lyme Bay, Captain Simon Herbert said “RFA Lyme Bay is operating with the EU Naval Force, whose mission is the deterrence, prevention and repression of acts of piracy and armed robbery off the Somali coast. In addition, Operation Atalanta contributes to the monitoring of fishing activities in the regional seaboard, and with the increase in fishing activity after the monsoon, Lyme Bay is able to reassure vulnerable fishing vessels through a proactive presence. This is emphasised by friendly approaches to gain a greater understanding of the regional pattern of life and to promote the efforts of EU Naval Force in suppressing acts of piracy”.
RFA Lyme Bay
RFA Lyme Bay will be operating as part of the EU Naval Force for a further three weeks. On completion of her Operation Atalanta tasking, Lyme Bay will rejoin Operation COUGAR 13 and return to the United Kingdom to commence her 2014 amphibious training programme.
Press Release, November 06, 2013; Image: EU Navfor