After two months of contributing to the European Union’s fight against Somali piracy in the Indian Ocean and Gulf of Aden, French warship FS Floréal is sailing towards her home port on La Réunion, which is a French territory in the Indian Ocean.
This is the fifth time that FS Floréal has participated in the EU Naval Force Somalia Operation Atalanta.
During this latest deployment, FS Floreal sailed over 10 thousand nautical miles, with the French warship conducting counter-piracy patrols in the Internationally Recommended Transit Corridor (IRTC) and wider piracy high risk area. The ship’s crew also carried out a number of ‘friendly approaches’ with local fishermen. Friendly approaches help to build trust and understanding between local sea farers and the naval forces conducting counter-piracy operations. FS Floréal also provided much-needed assistance to three fishing vessels in distress.
The frigate’s multi-role Panther helicopter was used during a number of tasks during the deployment. Flying for at least 80 hours, it assisted with medical and technical assistance that was given to seafarers during their time with Operation Atalanta.
Throughout her deployment, FS Floréal worked closely with the other counter-piracy warships and Maritime Patrol Reconnaissance Aircraft in the area of operations.
Press Release, June 19, 2014; Image: EU NAVFOR