The offshore patrol vessel 'Centinela' (P-72) belonging to the Navy's Maritime Action Force, based at the Ferrol Arsenal, put to sea during the afternoon of Sunday 15 October, in demand of the northern border with Portugal to locate and track two RFN units that were in transit in demand of their home port in the Baltic.
For this maritime surveillance operation, the "Sentinel" was integrated into the Maritime Operational Command, under the operational control of the Operations Command (MOPS).
Despite severe weather conditions and poor visibility, the target vessels, the tug "Sergey Balk" and the Kilo-class submarine "Krasnodar", were intercepted near the border on the afternoon of 17 October, after which the "Sentinel" continued its course in search of the northern boundary of the Spanish EEZ. During the afternoon of 18 October, and with the objectives of presence and tracking accomplished, the vessel returned to its home port in Ferrol.
The patrol vessel "Centinela".
With a crew of 40 people, the offshore patrol vessel "Centinela" is part of the Ferrol Maritime Action Force Unit Command.
The ship's main mission is to carry out maritime surveillance and security operations in areas of national sovereignty and interest. Likewise, its support to other state bodies in the fight against illegal immigration, drug trafficking and other criminal activities is also common. The vessel is prepared to carry out maritime interdiction operations (visiting, searching and, if necessary, seizing ships) and to provide aid, rescue and assistance at sea if required.
Maritime Action Force
The Maritime Action Force, integrated into the Fleet, is made up of the set of units whose main task is to prepare to protect international maritime interests and the control of maritime spaces of national sovereignty and interest, taking charge, with a comprehensive approach, of ensuring permanent cooperation with the various government bodies with responsibilities in the maritime sphere, which constitutes the Navy's contribution to the State's Action at Sea.
Maritime Operational Command
The Maritime Operational Command (MOM) is the body within the operational structure of the Armed Forces, subordinate to the Chief of Defence Staff (JEMAD), 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 for Maritime Action (ALMART) and is based in Cartagena.
Presence, Surveillance and Deterrence Operations
Presence, Surveillance and Deterrence Operations are an effective tool for maintaining surveillance of sovereign spaces, allowing early detection of threats and facilitating an immediate and viable response to a potential crisis.