FS Commandant Blaison Joins EUNAVFORMED IRINI

Following a technical shutdown from October 2021 to January 2022 and an operational upgrade at the end of February 2022, the high seas patrol vessel (PHM) Commandant Blaison set sail from Brest on April 19 to take part in the operation EUNAVFORMED IRINI.

Initially patrolling Gibraltar and then the central Mediterranean, Commander Blaison ‘s sailors took advantage of this patrol to perfect their practice in the specific area of ​​MIO ( Maritime Interdiction Operation ) and finalize preparation for their future mission.

During its patrol to the area of ​​operations, the crew endeavored to tackle this new challenge by diversifying its skills in artillery fire (100mm cannon, 12.7mm machine gun), by deepening combat first aid methods and by carrying out a summary exercise of controlling ships at sea to mechanize the various procedures in force within the IRINI operation.

From the VHF interrogation (radio communications) to the deployment of the boats and their projection towards a fictitious ship, the complete unfolding of the stages has made it possible, in conjunction with the IRINI operation staff, to consolidate collective knowledge and strengthen the group spirit.

Commander Blaison then landed in Augusta (Sicily) to install the circumstantial communication system and finalize his rise in power within the command chain of Operation IRINI. Commander Blaison ‘s sailors are now ready to integrate Operation IRINI in the service of security in the maritime approaches to the European Union.

Launched on March 31, 2020, Operation EUNAVFORMED IRINI aims to enforce the United Nations arms embargo on Libya with air, space and sea assets. At the same time, it helps enforce United Nations measures to prevent the illicit export of oil from Libya, and contributes to capacity building and training of the Libyan Coast Guard. France, through the action of the French Navy, is an important contributor to the EUNAVFORMED IRINI operation. In 2021, 25 flights of maritime patrol or surveillance aircraft were carried out (i.e. more than 150 flight hours) and high seas patrol boats were placed in direct support of this operation for 106 days.

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