War on piracy: Nave Rizzo will take part in the “Gabinia” mission

War on piracy: Nave Rizzo will take part in the “Gabinia” mission

The frigate Luigi Rizzo, at the end of a precautionary isolation of 17 days and after having carried out three specific tests for COVID-19, yesterday, 23 February, left the naval base of La Spezia to head towards the waters of the Gulf of Guinea, where it will be engaged for about four months on a mission to prevent and combat piracy and armed robbery at sea.

The Gulf of Guinea is in fact one of the seas in the world most at risk from piracy attacks, but at the same time of extreme importance for our country, due to its close connection with the Mediterranean and the strong related national interests. In fact, attacks against merchant ships in transit in the area are increasingly frequent, so much so that they are considered a concrete and constant risk to the free use of the sea for commercial traffic. This phenomenon affects the freedom of navigation, hinders the international production and commercial chain, to the detriment of the global economy. In fact, most of the products and raw materials related to West Africa transit through the main maritime communication routes (sea ​​lines of communication), where thousands of boats sail every day, including merchant ships and fishing boats.

The frigate Rizzo will simultaneously develop cooperation activities with local and allied Navies present in the region, including by participating in the OBANGAME ESPRESS 2021 exercise, with the aim of increasing cooperation between the European Navies and those of the coastal countries of West Africa and the Gulf of Guinea. Interaction and training activities with national merchant ships in the area will also be planned, involving shipping companies for which the presence of a Navy ship in such a “hot” area is extremely important.

From 2019 to today Nave Rizzo it is the fourth ship deployed in the Gulf of Guinea, bearing witness to the strategic, economic and energy importance of those maritime communication routes for Italy and Europe. An even greater commitment by the Navy in this portion of the sea is expected for 2021: approximately 8 months of total employment in two successive tranches in a region that is an integral part of the enlarged Mediterranean, which as frequently emphasized by Minister Guerini represents the area of ​​strategic interest national. The goal is to develop a structured operation that includes maritime presence and surveillance activities in the areas of interest, to be linked with the broader national political-military commitment in the African continent, through the increase of Capacity Building of Security Force Assistance and with the involvement of multinational partners (NATO, EU, UN and multilateral coalitions).

The “Gabinia” mission takes its name from a Roman law approved in 67 BC which granted Pompey the Great the widest possible powers to wage the war against the pirates who for decades had made the Mediterranean and its coasts unsafe.

Source: Difesaonline

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