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Maritime Action Ship P-44 'Tornado' calls for the first time at the port of Lome

October 23, 2023
  • As part of the deployment to the West African coast and the Gulf of Guinea, the ship has been conducting military cooperation and defence diplomacy activities for a week.

For the first time, a Spanish Navy ship has docked in the port of Lomé, in Togo. It was the Maritime Action Ship P-44 'Tornado' which, on its arrival in port, received on board the Spanish Ambassador to Togo, José Javier Gutiérrez Blanco-Navarrete.

Activities carried out in port

During the port call, the 'Tornado' went to sea for a 'VIP DAY' with numerous international maritime units. The event was commanded by the French military vessel "Mistral", where the embarked authorities were present. A sequence of events followed, including a naval parade. Units from the French, Italian, Brazilian, Nigerian, Nigerian, Beninese, Togolese and Spanish navies took part in the event.

In addition, the  "Tornado" carried out an exchange of officers in which a Spanish officer embarked on board the Brazilian military vessel "Amazonas", and a Brazilian officer embarked on board the P-42 "Tornado" during the dynamic demonstration.


The Commander and the head of operations attended a briefing on 'GANO-23' which had been held in the days prior to the vessel's entry into port and which consisted of a series of exercises coordinated with the countries bordering the Gulf of Guinea, such as Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone. All these events are essential to reinforce the maritime security capabilities of the coastal countries, with the common goal of achieving safe and secure maritime spaces free from threats.

A representation of the crew of the P-42 "Tornado" attended a reception on board the French military vessel "Mistral" together with the representations of all the participating countries. These events encourage the exchange of experiences and the development of relations based on mutual trust that make it possible to increase international maritime security.

On the last day in port, the ambassador and the Commander of the ship together with the ship's and embassy's staff made a series of protocol visits to Togolese authorities, thus strengthening bilateral relations between Spain and Togo.

Reception on board

The P-42 "Tornado" organised a reception on board chaired by the Spanish Ambassador to Togo, which was attended by numerous guests, including personnel from the Spanish colony, Spanish language students from the country and embassy staff. The event began with the traditional solemn lowering of the flag by the military guard, followed by words of thanks and welcome from the Spanish Ambassador and the Commander of the unit.

The first landfall in Lomé, Togo, of the P-42 "Tornado", reinforced by the presence on board of the Spanish Ambassador, contributes to the State's external action and projects a strong message of our country's commitment to Togo.

Deployment on the West African coast and Gulf of Guinea

During the CMP-GoG (Coordinated Maritime Presence - Gulf of Guinea) deployment, the ship carries out permanent maritime surveillance and environmental awareness activities, thus contributing to increasing maritime security in the region. It is also planned to carry 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 P-42 "Tornado" will support 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 ship, which is part of the Maritime Action Force in the Canary Islands Naval Command, will be integrated into the Maritime Operational Command (MOM), based in Cartagena, and under the operational control of the Operations Command (MOPS) during this deployment.

EU Coordinated Maritime Presences

The deployment of the P-42 'Tornado' contributes to 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 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 capacity. Spain, as a partner fully committed to European security and defence, is one of the main contributors to this EU initiative.

P-42 'Tornado

The P-42 "Tornado", the fourth ship of the "Meteoro" class, was built by Navantia in San Fernando and delivered to the Navy in 2012. It is based in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and has deployed on two previous occasions to the West African coast and the Gulf of Guinea, as well as in Operation Atalanta against piracy in the Indian Ocean on several occasions.

The maritime action ships are designed to carry out maritime surveillance and security missions in maritime areas of national interest, the fight against maritime pollution, the fight against illegal immigration and collaboration with the State Security Forces and Corps in the fight against drug trafficking and terrorism.