As a consequence of the people smuggling shipwrecks off Libya, the EU launched a military operation known as European Union Naval Force Mediterranean.

This operation, also known as Operation Sophia, has the aim of neutralising established refugee smuggling routes in the Mediterranean.

EUNAVFOR Med consists of three phases:

  • The first phase focuses on surveillance and assessment of human smuggling and trafficking networks in the Mediterranean.
  • The second stage of the operation provides for the search and, if necessary, diversion of suspicious vessels.
  • The third phase would allow the disposal of vessels and related assets, preferably before use, and to apprehend traffickers and smugglers.

There is a common budget of 11.82 million Euro for a 12 months period. Within its premises, the EU Operation HQ can host in excess of 200 civil and military planners who work together to accomplish the mission assigned by Brussels. For EUNAVFOR MED operation the Italian EU OHQ has been activated with 175 personnel position, almost 60 to be filled by different country of Member States.

In addition, military assets and personnel are provided by the contributing states with the running costs and personnel costs being met on a national basis.

Vessels from all over the continent are deployed, notably the Italian aircraft carrier Cavour. British vessels are also present, HMS Enterprise having replaced HMS Bulwark on the mission.

More than 13,000 migrants have been rescued from the sea in the course of the operation.

George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. He also works for the NHS. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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Vincenzo Ferrandino
5 years ago


Peter Colley
5 years ago

Making it worse by picking people up

Rob Simmonds
5 years ago

Doing deals with Turkish dictators to keep our hands clean.

James Davies
5 years ago

Take them back to where they came from

Mark Llewellyn
5 years ago

Creating confusion with no real direction on what they are trying to achieve and no idea how to do it. Do what Australia is doing with great results SEND THEM BACK!

Dave Stone
Dave Stone
5 years ago

We’re actually doing the traffickers job for them by picking up the people from the boats and taking them safely to Europe. The traffickers are laughing and it does nothing to discourage people from paying out a lot of money for the journey. I’m afraid I can’t see any other way than to actually return them to where ever they set out from.

Do we know if any traffickers have been caught at all??

Darren McRitchie
5 years ago

Nothing vote leave

UK Defence Journal
5 years ago

Except, the article explains fully that they’re not doing “nothing”, don’t hijack our page with your political point scoring.

Darren McRitchie
5 years ago

You asked us!!!!