Spanish patrol vessel Relámpago departs for operation Atalanta

Spanish Navy offshore patrol vessel (OPV) Relámpago, departed its homeport of Las Palmas Naval Station in Canary Islands to integrate into EUNAVFOR’s counter-piracy operation Atalanta.

Relámpago will join the Spanish frigate Santa Maria which is already part of the mission.

Currently commanded by Dutch Commodore Luyckx, the EU-led counter-piracy operation in the Indian Ocean is entrusted with the protection of vulnerable shipping in the area, especially WFP (World Food Program) and AMISOM (African Union Mission in Somalia) ships.

Spain has been contributing to the mission since it started in 2008.

The Relámpago is under command of Lt-Cdr. Francisco García and has a complement of 86 people including the embarked air unit personnel and a Marine Corps security squad.