Between 24 October and 6 November 2014 the Royal New Zealand Air Force contributed to the European Union’s counter-piracy mission, Operation Atalanta off the coast of Somalia.
This is the first time that the Royal New Zealand Air Force has participated in the EU counter-piracy mission, with its P-3K2 Orion long range surveillance aircraft conducting aerial patrols along the Somali coast and Gulf of Aden.
The contribution forms part of an on-going commitment by New Zealand to counter-piracy operations off the coast of Somalia. Before joining Operation Atalanta the New Zealand forces were deployed with the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF), a 29-nation-strong counter-piracy mission operating out of Bahrain.
Currently Operation Atalanta is supported by EU warships from Italy, Belgian, the Netherlands, Spain and Germany, with Spain and Germany also providing maritime patrol aircraft.
Press release, Image: EUNAVFOR