Ministry of Defence logo Defence Staff logo
Mapa del mundo

Offshore patrol vessel 'AUDAZ' completes its integration into operation 'Sea Guardian'

Western Mediterranean
March 28, 2022
  • It has been integrated into NATO's maritime operational structure for ten days

After more than 1,600 miles sailed and roughly 700 ships monitored, the Offshore Patrol Vessel (BAM in Spanish) 'Audaz' has successfully completed its participation in FOCOPS (Focused Operations) 22-2 of operation 'Sea Guardian', under the operational control of the Operations Command (MOPS in Spanish), during this focused patrol, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance activities have been carried out in the Western Mediterranean, assessing patterns of life and detecting suspicious activities, in coordination with air assets directed by the operation commander. There has also been continuous interaction with sea lines of communication in order to strengthen ties and cooperation between all actors and to obtain relevant operational information.

These FOCOPS have proved the high capabilities of the ships and their crews to operate in a combined manner under the Maritime Allied Command (MARCOM). The maritime group docked in the Moroccan port of Tangier, where it was visited by the Spanish Consul General in Tangier, Alfonso Portabales Vázquez.

Operation Sea Guardian

Operation 'Sea Guardian' was launched on November 9th, 2016 following the previous operation 'Active Endevour'. Its main goal is maritime environment awareness, maritime counter-terrorism and contribution to build up regional maritime security capabilities, in order to do this Spain put at NATO disposal maritime assets as BAM 'Audaz'. The maritime area to be covered in this Operation includes the international waters of the Mediterranean Sea and those close to the Strait of Gibraltar. For this mission, the BAM 'Audaz' has reinforced its capabilities with a medical officer and an operational security team of Marines from the Tercio de Levante.

NATO Maritime Group

The maritime group that participated in this 'SEA GUARDIAN' FOCOPS, led by Portuguese naval captain Antonio Rodrigues, was made up of three ships: the NRP 'Viana do Castelo', the Portuguese ship that acted as the grouping's command ship, the Royal Navy's HMS 'Trent', and the Navy's 'Audaz'. In addition to these ships, air assets from different Alliance countries also took part, all under the command of the Commander of the Allied Maritime Command (COM MARCOM).