Sweden officially took command of this week’s European operation against maritime piracy called Atalanta which has its headquarters in Djibouti, a statement of the mission received Monday by Xinhua.
The ceremony was held on board the Italian ship Andrea Doria, between the Italian Admiral Guido Rando, and the Swedish Admiral Jonas Haggren, now lead the Atalanta from a ship in the Netherlands, Johan De Witt
Operation Atalanta consists of several ships at sea, and maritime patrol aircraft based in Djibouti and the Seychelles and an armed detachment that protects vessels of the World Food Programme serving Somalia.
In 2014, the mandate of Operation Atalanta has been extended for two years, and its contribution has been expanded with the overall approach of the EU in the Horn of Africa.
According to figures published by the European Commission, since its launch in 2009, Atalanta allowed the capture and conviction of nearly 130 pirates, while more than 160 pirate attacks were recorded in the same year in the region with nearly 50 commercial vessels hijacked.
In 2014, two pirate attacks were recorded only and no ship captured by pirates, the source said.