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European shipowners have welcomed the EU’s decision to extended the Operation Atalanta until the end of 2020.

On July 30, the European Council decided to extent the mandate of EU NAVFOR Somalia’s operation until December 31, 2020.

The objectives of the Operation Atalanta are deterrence, prevention and repression of acts of piracy and armed robbery off the Somali coast and the protection of the World Food Program (WFP) and other vulnerable shipping, fishing activities and EU missions and programs in the region.

“The naval presence of the EU NAVFOR Operation Atalanta and the cooperation with other international forces, has strongly contributed to the dramatic decrease in piracy attacks in this region,” Martin Dorsman, ECSA’s Secretary General, said.

The number of attacks off the coast of Somalia in the Indian Ocean has decreased from 176 in 2011 to 9 in 2017, while no incident was reported during the second quarter of 2018.

Source: worldmaritimenews.com