Training is a priority for the crews of military ships, even those engaged in op. Atalanta. The Italian frigate Margottini trains and replenishes at sea with the Spanish Patiño oiler.
The multimission frigate Carlo Margottini , engaged in the Indian Ocean at the helm of Operation Atalanta and headquarters of the Naval Force flagship, after having conducted patrolling and familiarization along the northern Somali coast, met at sea with the Spanish ship Patiño, also engaged along the coast of eastern Somaliland. This meeting at sea, just over a week from the beginning of the mission, represents the completion of a phase in which the naval units, the organic helicopters and the two MPRA ( Maritime Patrol and Reconnaisance Aircraft ) aircraft have carried out surveillance and demonstration in the eyes of the maritime operators of the area the presence of the European Task Force.
In the waters in front of the Horn of Africa, in fact, the two units conducted a joint training, mainly focused on refueling at sea, RAS (Refueling at sea), but more generally the joint training served to strengthen the interoperability, the rapid reaction capability of the crews in the various operational needs and to test the level of readiness of the same.
The refueling at sea, given the level of coordination it needs to be implemented, the reduced distances between the ships in navigation and the delicacy in maneuvering equipment in tension, represents an excellent formative moment for the crews.
The event was also a formative moment for the young Vessel Officers of the Margottini and for the crews of both units who were able to practice kinematic maneuvers in difficult conditions with a series of maneuvers for changes and passages in the different configurations of training in the which the navy units are expected to sail. The activity was also characterized by the use of the air force vehicles of the Task Force such as the Spanish helicopter SH-60B and the P-3M Orion maritime patrol aircraft, also Spanish, simultaneously engaged in the area of operation by activity reconnaissance.
The Force Commander of Operation Atalanta, Rear Admiral Simone Malvagna was received on board of ship Patiño, welcomed by Commander Ricardo Fernàndez Lòpez, where he had the opportunity to meet the Spanish crew almost reached the end of the mandate under the European flag. Simultaneously with the visit of the Force Commander on board the Spanish unit, a Spanish delegation was received on board the Margottini flagship to foster the integration and cohesion between the crews of the two nations and support an increasingly effective cooperation and coordination in the fight against piracy. .
At the end of the activity the Task Force Units resumed patrolling to maintain a clear situation at sea and along the coast for an effective deterrence and contrast to piracy at sea.