HMS Enterprise was deployed in June last year to rescue migrants crossing the Mediterranean from Libya to Italy, it is now understood she has rescued over 7,000 migrants.

Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said while in Cyprus:

“In a single year, HMS Enterprise has rescued over 7,000 migrants.

I have awarded the entire ship’s crew the Firmin Sword of Peace, given to the unit that has carried out exceptional service beyond the call of duty.”

Before arriving in Cyprus Mr Fallon visited Malta where he held bilateral talks with his counterpart Minister Carmelo Abela, to deepen defence relations.

The UK and Malta have strong historical ties, a recent example being the UK providing security for last year’s Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM).

While in Malta Mr Fallon visited the crew of HMS Enterprise in the port of Valletta where it was being replenished.

HMS Enterprise has been deployed in the Mediterranean since June 2015 where it has been providing a vital contribution to Operation Sophia, the EU mission saving thousands of lives in the Mediterranean and breaking the business models of the people smugglers.

Recognising this significant contribution, the Defence Secretary announced that HMS Enterprise’s crew has been selected as the Royal Navy’s recipient of the Firmin Sword of Peace. The Sword of Peace is an award given to units of the UK Armed Forces who have gone above and beyond their normal role.

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Chris O'Callaghan

Wow! They got the sword of peace! That’s so good! I bet they are all so glad they didn’t get a medal or some personal form of recognition and thanks……?


Got 3 of them as well!

Robert Durrant

Bet the survey recorders are dripping about migrants nicking their kit though

Paddy Brizzell

How much will the 7000 immigrants cost the taxpayer ?

Anto O'Keene

Your boots and dry socks.

Curtis Ross

Not a lot if anything

Paddy Brizzell

Really would you like to pay for the housing, education, health care, benifits and pensions for 7000 people ?

Simon Taylor

Hope they were all returned to France?!

Kyle Greet

“… to rescue migrants crossing the Mediterranean from Libya to Italy”

Simon Taylor

Then they should be returned to Libya!

Cristian Coman

Give them to Neptune

Shaw Durman

To Boldly Go … 🙂

Steve Arnott

HMS Taxi to the rescue….

Tom Hewitt

It’s a very expensive ferry boat

Steve Birchmore

Compare and contrast and ask why – The US Coast Guard takes migrants picked up at sea back to where they came from: “Interdicting migrants at sea means they can be quickly returned to their countries of origin without the costly processes required if they successfully enter the United States.”

Steve Birchmore

“A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the… Read more »

Steve Birchmore

Compare and contrast the policy of the Royal Navy with the Royal Australian Navy:

Steve Birchmore

I can’t remember voting for this – can anyone?

Julien Dixon

Should be in UK waters augmenting the few UK border Force boats we have, rotecting our coastline.

Paul Ward

Agreed it should be patrolling UK waters

UK Defence Journal

It’s a survey vessel, not a patrol ship.

Geoff Venning

Then what’s it doing picking up migrants?

Paul Ward

Geoff Venning – my thoughts as well

Sarah Powley

Saving lives?

Ray Lovie


David Gil

This is not a good deed. This is aid to illegal immigration, the country should be ashamed that it sends its sailors to do this.

David Gil

7000 is a lot of people. There’s a fair chance that among those there is at least one ISIS member that will kill…. … Is the Royal Navy facilitating terrorism now ? No brains there?


I’m appalled by some of these comments. These people are human beings and I’m happy that our RN helps to save lives. What I really don’t understand though is why rescued wannabe-migrants aren’t returned to point of departure. That would avoid so many problems (camps in Europe, terrorists creeping in, ability to more carefully vet genuine refugees when they’re not already on European soil, and last and definitely not least – break the business model of the people traffickers). Why is this not done? Is it because we (Europe) can’t accurately prove exactly where a boat intercepted in the middle… Read more »

David Anthony Simpson

Well Done…. a sad task if ever there was one but professionally done by the RN as ever.

Kevin Smith

and returned them all to Libya?….Ah! I guess not!

Darren McRitchie

Yeah all men

UK Defence Journal

No Darren, around 60% on average were men.

Philip Keary

The other 40% were men dressed as woman.


Wayne Cribbin

It’s life Jim but not as we know it.

Adam Mansfield

well done i hope her crew never has to lay eyes on these negative comments, leaving someone to drown is something we should never allow if we’re supposedly the better men in all this

Henry Sinclair

Good, as long as they take them back to North Africa! Otherwise sue the skipper! 7,000 x ??????? X ???? Years???? Just for starters + every rape / crime they will commit!

Wife of a serving RN Officer

Wow.. The comment thread on this article is really appalling.