“Our mandate on this mission, led by the European Union, was to stop arms smuggling across the Mediterranean to Libya,” said frigate captain Stefan Klatt. Operation “Irini” (modern Greek for “the peacemaker”) is intended to monitor the UN arms embargo against Libya and to control cargo ships heading for the North African country. According to the Navy, the mission’s tasks also include collecting information about illegal exports of crude oil and crude oil from Libya.
“The Mediterranean made a little safer”
The crew of the “Berlin” examined the cargo of merchant ships several times and, according to the Navy, covered more than 27,000 nautical miles on patrols. “I think that we have made the Mediterranean a bit safer and that we have also built trust in the mission and the EU,” said Frigate Captain Klatt.
220 soldiers cast off in March
The ship, which is more than 170 meters long, left the Wilhelmshaven naval base at the beginning of March with around 220 soldiers. In addition to Germans, Lithuanian soldiers were also on board during the mission. At times the crew was supported by the P-3C “Orion” maritime patrol aircraft from Nordholz, an aircraft of the Navy. Two helicopters from Marinefliegergeschwader 5 from Nordholz were also in use to transport personnel and material.
Visits to the ship planned for mid-August
In mid-August, the “Berlin” is to take part as the flagship of the “Weekend at the Jade” event. Then the largest German naval ship, of which there are three types, can also be viewed by civilian guests in Wilhelmshaven.