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The Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV) 'Audaz' docks in the port of Dakar

May 3, 2023
  • This call by the (OPV) serves to enhance collaboration with Senegal, a crucial country for Spain.

As part of its mission in the Gulf of Guinea, the OPV 'Audaz' has called into the port of Dakar to enhance military cooperation links between Senegal and Spain and to project Spain's commitment to security in the region.

After more than 100 days deployed and after having sailed 15,000 miles, the Offshore Patrol Vessel arrived in Dakar where the Spanish Ambassador to Senegal, Olga Cabarga Gómez, was hosted on board. Senegal is a priority nation within the "Africa Focus 2023" document, which reflects the significance of this stopover for our country.

During the stay in port, meetings were held with different military authorities of Senegal, and a visit was made to the 40th Spanish contingent of the 'Marfil' Tactical Air Detachment of the Air and Space Army. These activities not only send a message of commitment to Senegal, but also strengthen the State's external action in its contribution to international peace and security.

Cooperative security measures

As part of the Cooperative Security Agreement signed between Spain and Senegal, a series of activities were programmed both in port and at sea for mutual benefit. First, fire fighting and damage control, diving, salvage and rescue, and force protection training were conducted. This was continued with training of increasing difficulty in tactical unopposed and uncooperative boarding, boarding, and precision target shooting. The latter were conducted at sea, alongside the Senegalese patrol vessel "Cachouane", providing a unique opportunity for the two vessels to operate together at sea and exploit further mutual training opportunities. Two Special Operations Teams from the Senegalese Navy also participated in the exercises. All these activities are essential to enhance the maritime security capabilities of the countries in the region, with the common goal of achieving secure and threat-free maritime spaces.

Civil-military activities

During the stay in Dakar, a meeting was held with ship owners and representatives of Spanish companies in the fishing sector. This activity allowed for first-hand contact with national seafaring interests in the region, and showed the firm determination of the Armed Forces to protect them. In addition, a large group of members of the OPV "Audaz" crew had the opportunity to visit "La Pouponnière", an orphanage run by the Franciscan Missionary Sisters of Mary which was founded on 5 August 1955, and to help there with carpentry, electrical and cleaning work. The Armed Forces' vocation in the region is the stability of the area and the prosperity of its local population.