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Another Spanish Navy Vessel To Protect Indian Ocean Tuna Fleet

The Spanish patrol vessel ‘Infanta Elena’ sailed towards the coast of Somalia this week to protect the tuna fleet in the Indian Ocean in the fight against piracy.

According to the vessel’s commander, Captain Tomas Dolorea, the ‘Infanta Elena’ will reach the Indian Ocean at the end of the month and will join the European Navy as part of the Atalanta mission. It begins its second participation in the community mission. In the coming weeks, it will help strengthen the protection for tuna fishing vessels operating in the Indian Ocean.
The Infanta Elena has extensive experience in international missions. It was part of former naval groupings as the Multinational Interception Force in the Red Sea, during the naval blockade imposed by the UN against Iraq in 1991 and in operation Libre Hidalgo in the waters of Lebanon, La Opinion informed.
The 88 meter-long vessels can accommodate a crew of 102, including 11 Marines who will perform security duties. It has various combat weapons such as cannons, machine guns and missile launchers.
The Atalanta Operation was launched early 2008 to improve the safety of maritime traffic in the Horn of Africa. Since its start in 2008 to the present, ship hijacking has significantly decreased in the Indian Ocean. However attacks of the pirates are still numerous and tuna fishing boats remain at risk in the area.