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The Offshore Patrol Vessel 'Audaz' returns to base port after five months in the Gulf of Guinea

Cartagena, Murcia
June 6, 2023
  • The navy vessel completes its deployment in 'Coordinated Maritime Presences' in the Gulf of Guinea

The Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV) 'Audaz' returns to the dock of 'La Curra', Cartagena, after five months sailing in the waters of the Gulf of Guinea on surveillance and maritime security duties, an area of special strategic interest for Spain.

Arrival of the OPV 'Audaz' at its base port.

The OPV 'Audaz' returns to its base port in Cartagena and brings to an end its operations on the west coast of Africa and the Gulf of Guinea after 143 days away from its base port, having sailed more than 20,000 nautical miles, both in the northern and southern hemisphere, and after having visited the ports of Lagos (Nigeria), Pointe Noire (Republic of Congo), Luanda (Angola), Tema (Ghana), Douala (Cameroon), Libreville (Gabon), Port-Gentil (Gabon), Sao Tome (Sao Tome and Principe), Dakar (Senegal), Nouadhibou (Mauritania), Lagos (Nigeria) and Abidjan (Ivory Coast), a total of 10 countries and 12 ports. This deployment has been the longest to date in these maritime areas.

Deployment in the West African coast and in the Gulf of Guinea

During the CMP-GoG (Coordinated Maritime Presence - Gulf of Guinea) deployment, the vessel has carried out maritime surveillance and environmental awareness activities on a permanent basis, thus contributing to increasing maritime security in the region. It has also carried out multiple military cooperation activities with the coastal countries, fostering mutual knowledge and trust and helping to increase their capabilities in the area of maritime security. The 'Audaz' has also supported the Spanish diplomatic delegations in the region, with the aim of contributing to the State's action abroad and reinforcing national interests in the region. The vessel has been integrated into the Maritime Operational Command, based at the headquarters of the Maritime Action Force in Cartagena, and under the operational control of the Operations Command.

EU Coordinated Maritime Presences

The deployment of the (OPV) 'Audaz' has made a decisive contribution in strengthening the European Union's Coordinated Maritime Presences initiative as an effective instrument to improve maritime security in the area, and to advance cooperation between the EU and the West and Central African states. The aim of this mechanism in the region is to ensure a permanent maritime presence and availability, to promote international maritime cooperation and to provide greater European operational capability. It should be noted that Spain, as a partner fully committed to European security and defence, is one of the main contributors to this EU initiative.