At 1200 GMT today, Wednesday the 14 April, the Italian Rear Admiral Giovanni Gumiero relinquished command of Task Force 465, the EU Naval Force Somalia â€“ Operation Atalanta.
The Swedish Rear Admiral Jan ThÃ¶rnqvist took over command and the multinational Force Headquarters will now operate from the EU NAVFOR HSwMS Carlskrona.
â€œOperation Atalanta is, and will continue to be, a very important operation, foremost from a humanitarian perspective. Our military effort will therefore contribute to generate relief for those who suffer in Somalia and security for seafarers sailing the waters off Somaliaâ€, admiral ThÃ¶rnqvist said.
He also stated that his intention is to continue the very good work of Admiral Gumiero and his team onboard the Italian ship Etna.
The new Force Commander continued, â€œI am very proud to be entrusted with the task of commanding Task Force 465 and confident in doing this important job together with my multinational staff afloat, including the crew onboard Carlskrona, the other EU NAVFOR units and our logistic support in Djiboutiâ€.
EU NAVFOR Somalia â€“ Operation ATALANTAâ€™s main tasks are to escort merchant vessels carrying humanitarian aid of the â€˜World Food Programâ€™ (WFP) and vessels of AMISOM, and to protect vulnerable ships in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean and to deter and disrupt piracy. EUNAVFOR also monitors fishing activity off the coast of Somalia.
Published: April 14, 2010