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The OPV 'Audaz' has called at the port of Doula

March 27, 2023
  • With this visit that serves to strengthen cooperation ties, the Armed Forces project their presence on the West African coast

As part of its deployment on the West African coast and the Gulf of Guinea, the Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV) 'Audaz' has docked for 4 days at the port of Douala to carry out activities of presence, military cooperation and support to the foreign action of the State.

Stopover in Douala (Cameroon)

The vessel docked in Douala, Cameroon's most populated city and the country's economic centre, after having been carrying out operational activities in support of the Cameroon Navy and the Maritime Multinational Coordination Centre in Douala.During the stopover, military cooperation, presence and defence diplomacy activities were carried out, as well as logistical operations to supply the ship.

The OPV 'Audaz' is deployed in the Gulf of Guinea, integrated into the operational structure of the Armed Forces and within the framework of the Coordinated Maritime Presences (CMP) of the European Union (EU). Its objective is to project maritime security in an area of vital strategic interest. Since its departure from Spain, it has already covered more than 10,000 nautical miles.

Presence and defence diplomacy

On its arrival in port, the BAM 'Audaz' was received by the Spanish ambassador to Cameroon, Ignacio García Lumbreras, who embarked with the corresponding regulatory honours. He addressed the crew to congratulate them on their latest operational activities. For his part, the commander of the OPV 'Audaz' held several meetings with Cameroonian civilian and military regional authorities.

These defence diplomacy activities contribute to strengthen the State's foreign action. The landfall in Cameroon of one of the most modern vessels of the Navy, reinforced by the presence on board of the Spanish ambassador which coincided with the official visit of the Secretary of State of Foreign and Global Affairs to Yaounde, sends a strong message of our country's commitment to Cameroon.

Military cooperation with the Cameroon Navy

During the stopover in port, various military cooperation activities were carried out with the Cameroon Navy. Training periods were held on diving, fire-fighting, boarding and infrastructure protection. Sports competitions and social events were also scheduled to strengthen ties between the two navies. The commander and a delegation from the OPV 'Audaz' had the opportunity to learn about the means with which Cameroon contributes to the Yaoundé Architecture, as Cameroon plays a leading role in the "D zone" of this regional security architecture.

All these activities are key to strengthen the maritime security capabilities of coastal countries, with the common goal of achieving safe, secure and threat-free maritime spaces.

Supporting cooperation projects

A very large group of members of the OPV 'Audaz' crew had the opportunity to learn about the work of the Crusader Missionaries of the Church and to visit two schools in the area, a dispensary and a shelter. They helped with carpentry, electricity and moving equipment. They also contributed by performing  health care work and participated in some of the classes. Such civil-military activities reinforce the Armed Forces' commitment to the stability of the region and support the prosperity of the local population.