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Lithuania will take part in the EU counterpiracy Operation ATALANTA



On January 5 Lithuania commences participation in Operation ATALANTA, a naval EU counterpiracy campaign off the Somali cost. Lithuania deploys one naval staff officer to the Operational Headquarters at Northwood, UK.


Lithuanian military representative is deployed for an around six-month rotation period after which he will be replaced by another Lithuanian officer.


Operation ATALANTA was launched by the EU in 2008 as a reaction to a surge of piracy acts off the Somali coast. The main objectives of the operation is to ensure security for shipping of humanitarian aid to Somalia, secure shipping by deterring and disrupting piracy and armed robbery, and detaining pirates caught at sea by patrolling the Gulf of Aden and Somali waters with military vessels.


ATALANTA is the most extensive EU’s military operation backed by combat and other capabilities from the member states. During two years of operation it was joined by 22 EU members and four non-EU states, participants include France, Germany, UK, Italy, Spain, Sweden, Estonia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Ukraine, Finland, the Benelux, etc. Around two thousand of military personnel are involved in Operation ATALANTA.


Operation ATALANTA was extended to December 2012.


In 2011 Lithuania will continue contributing military personnel to multinational operations in Afghanistan (over 200 troops) and Iraq (2 military instructors in NATO Training Mission-Iraq).


Official website of Operation ATALANTA: http://www.eunavfor.eu/

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