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The offshore patrol vessel 'Atalaya' begins a surveillance and security mission in maritime areas under national sovereignty.

In the sea
January 10, 2023
  • The offshore patrol vessel 'Atalaya' begins a surveillance and security mission in maritime areas under national sovereignty.

The offshore patrol vessel 'Atalaya' has set out to sea from its base at the Ferrol Arsenal for a maritime surveillance and security operation in areas of interest. It will be incorporated into the Maritime Operational Command (MOC) under the control of the Spain Operations Command (MOPS), within the permanent operations of the Armed Forces and in coordination with the Maritime Operations and Surveillance Centre (MOSC), located in Cartagena.

In addition, the 'Atalaya' will act in associated support to NATO's 'Sea Guardian' operation to contribute to the control and protection of the most important maritime lines of communication in the area to prevent trafficking and illicit activities, all in coordination with MOSC.

The Navy vessel will dock in Melilla where an open day event will be held.

Offshore patrol vessel ‘Atalaya’

Its tasks include naval presence, surveillance and control of maritime spaces of national sovereignty and interest. Compliance will be verified within international regulations, especially the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. It will also carry out tasks to protect submerged archaeological heritage and the fishing community in Spanish waters.

Additionally, the offshore patrol vessel 'Atalaya' will be supporting NATO's 'Sea Guardian' or the EU's 'FRONTEX-INDALO' operations against human trafficking.

The 'Atalaya', commanded by Lieutenant Commander Ramón Leste León, is the fourth vessel of the 'Serviola' class, and in its thirty years of service, has taken part in the 'charter conflict', and in operations such as 'Africa Partner Ship', 'Noble Sentinel' or 'Indalo'.

Maritime Operational Command (MOC)

The Maritime Operational Command (MOC) is the operational structure of the Armed Forces. It is subordinated to the Chief of Defence Staff (JEMAD, in Spanish) responsible, at his level, for planning, conducting, and monitoring permanent 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.

Standing Watch and Deterrent Operations

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

The Land, Maritime, Aerospace, and the newly created Cyberspace Operational Commands 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.