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Offshore Patrol Vessel 'Infanta Cristina' kicks off a maritime surveillance mission in the south of the peninsula

Strait of Gibraltar
February 3, 2022
  • Spanish Navy’s warship is integrated into the Maritime Operational Command, under operational control of the Operations Command

Offshore patrol vessel 'Infanta Cristina' set off to conduct surveillance and security tasks over the maritime areas under national sovereignty in the south of the peninsula, as part of the permanent operations of the Armed Forces. The vessel is part of the Maritime Operational Command (MOM), under the operational control of the Operations Command (MOPS).  

The ship's crew are 74 people plus seven marines from the Operational Security Team (EOS) belonging to 'Tercio de Levante'.

Its primary mission is carrying out maritime surveillance and security operations in national sovereignty areas. It also supports other public bodies in the control of maritime traffic, fishing surveillance or the search and rescue of shipwrecked persons.

Maritime Operational Command (MOM)

MOM is the organisation of the operational structure of the Armed Forces, subordinate to the Chief of Defence Staff, responsible for planning, conducting and monitoring surveillance and security operations in maritime areas of sovereignty, responsibility and national interest. It is under the command of the Admiral of Maritime Action (ALMART) and is based in Cartagena.

Armed Forces’ Standing Operations

Standing Operations are an effective tool for maintaining surveillance of sovereign spaces, enabling early threat detection and enabling an immediate and effective response to a potential crisis.

The traditional Land Operational Command (MOT), Maritime (MOM), Aerospace (MOA) and the recently established Cyberspace (MOC) make up the Standing Command structure. On a daily basis, some 3,000 Armed Forces personnel are involved in permanent operations, under the operational control of the Operations Command.

Offshore Patrol Vessel 'Infanta Cristina'

Built as the fourth corvette belonging to the ‘Descubierta’ class by Bazán Shipyards in Cartagena, it was commissioned to the Spanish Navy on 24 November 1980, and the National Flag was hoisted on board for the first time by H.R.H. Doña Cristina.

Between September 2004 and June 2005 it was upgraded to offshore patrol  (P-77) and its home port is in Cartagena.