The Spanish Navy’s offshore patrol vessel (OPV) ‘Tarifa’ has just departed from Cartagena to participate in the International Joint Deployment Plan in the Western Mediterranean Sea to monitor the fishing campaign of the Bluefin Tuna. This operation forms part of the European Fishing Agency initiative.
The ‘Tarifa’ will control the Spanish fishing grounds located between Cartagena and the Spanish border with France in order to verify the implementation of national regulations on closed seasons, fishing tackle and approved grounds.
The authorized fishing fleet consists of 6 Spanish and 7 French tuna seiners; 13 auxiliary tugs and 2 fattening farms. Another purpose of the mission is the control of around 700 by-catch fishing boats.
To carry out this monitoring mission, the ‘Tarifa’ will embark 6 civilian inspectors (4 Spanish and 2 French) along with a further group of 5 ICCAT-certified naval officers, who will conduct the scheduled control of fishing boats and related facilities.
Other monitoring assets include aircraft from the Sea Secretariat, support inspectors ashore, and a light patrol boat from the Civil Guard (Guardia Civil) Maritime Service.
The ship will return to her home port on June 26th after a scheduled port of call in Palma de Mallorca (June 7-8) where the inspectors will be relieved.
Press Release, May 28, 2014; Image: Spanish Navy