Intervention of the FGNE, the frigate 'Canarias' and the 5th Squadron

The images of the arrest of six pirates by the Spanish Navy in the Gulf of Aden

The Spanish Navy has dealt a new blow to piracy in the Horn of Africa area, specifically in the Gulf of Aden.

A spectacular exercise of the Spanish Special Naval Warfare Force in Galicia
NATO highlights and shows the 'air power' of the Spanish aircraft carrier 'Juan Carlos I'

According to two statements issued by the General Staff of the Defense of Spain (EMAD) and the European Union Naval Force (EUNAVFOR), the frigate "Canarias" F-86, belonging to the 41st Escort Squadron of the Spanish Navy and which is in that area participating in Operation Atalanta against piracy in the Indian Ocean, received an alert about a pirate attack against the merchant ship MV Chrystal Artic, with flag of the Marshall Islands, in the waters of the Gulf of Aden, an attack that took place last Friday, May 10.

The alert reported that six pirates opened fire on the merchant and that it managed to repel the attack thanks to the security equipment it had on board. The Spanish ship headed towards the area at maximum speed "when it was 55 nautical miles away from the position of the incident," says the EMAD.

The frigate "Canarias" deployed its SH-60F Seahawk helicopter from the 5th Aircraft Squadron to locate the vessel responsible for the attack, while the Spanish ship continued sailing to the area at maximum speed. The EMAD statement adds: "The helicopter reached the incident position in a short time and located the six alleged perpetrators of the attack at sea with significant injuries such as cuts and burns and with their boat about to capsize. Shortly after and, after the pirate vessel completely sank, the helicopter launched two life rafts that served to guarantee the survival of the alleged pirates until the ship arrived in the area."

When the Spanish frigate arrived at the position where the pirates were, according to the EMAD, "it lowered its vessels and proceeded to take the alleged attackers of the merchant ship into custody. The War team was in charge of this action Naval Especial (FGNE)", the special operations force of the Spanish Navy, "which also collected the remains of material from the sunken boat from the sea for later use as possible evidence of the attack."

Once on board the frigate "Canarias", the alleged pirates were identified and recognized by the ROLE-2F medical team of the Spanish ship. The EMAD statement adds: "One of them had to be treated urgently for his injuries and the medical team was able to stabilize him."

Once the pirates were arrested, they were transferred to Port Victoria, in the Seychelles Islands, "where the injured person was evacuated and those under custody were handed over to the authorities. Seychelles is a country with which Operation 'ATALANTA' has a legal agreement that allows the surrender and subsequent prosecution of the alleged piratesthat intercept the ships integrated into this European Union operation in the Indian Ocean", points out the EMAD.

This is the fifth deployment of the frigate "Canarias" in Operation Atalanta since the launch of this device by the European Union Naval Force in December 2008. In its first deployment, In 2009, the F-86 participated in the rescue of the Spanish tuna boat "Alakrana", which had been kidnapped by Somali pirates.

The photos that you can see in this entry have been published by EMAD and EUNAVFOR. In them we see the FGNE operators with their green berets and uniforms with a Multicam mimetic pattern. Judging by the patch worn by one of the operators, they are members of the V Estol "Íberos" of that special operations unit.

Congratulations to all the participants in this operation against piracy, with which Spain continues a long tradition of fighting this type of crime on the seas. Bravo Zulu!

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