The European Union’s Naval Operation, IRINI announced that it investigated 270 merchant vessels via radio calls out of 7,798. It also carried out 15 visits on ships with consent, out of 408.
In a statement, IRINI added that it also monitored 12 suspicious flights, out of 1,064, and continued to monitor 25 airports and landing strips, and 16 ports and oil terminals.
On 15-16 November, Operation IRINI and NATO Maritime Command co-organised the 11th edition of the Conference SHADE MED (Shared Awareness and De-confliction in the Mediterranean), where 200 participants exchanged views on the “new challenges to regional security in the Mediterranean.”
After the Berlin I Conference on Libya, the European Union decided to launch a new Operation called EUNAVOR MED IRINI on 31 March 2020. This was mainly a maritime operation, and focused on implementing the UN arms embargo on Libya.
IRINI is part of the European integrated approach to Libya involving political, military, economic, and humanitarian efforts to bring stability and security to the country.
Since its launch, IRINI has boarded and inspected 25 suspect vessels. On three occasions, IRINI seized cargo assessed to be in violation of the UN arms embargo, and diverted the vessels to a port of an EU Member State. Turkey has denied the consent to board and inspect suspect vessels on nine occasions.
Furthermore, the Operation has provided 41 special reports to the UN Panel of Expert on Libya, most of which referred to violations or possible violations of the arms embargo and oil smuggling activities in the west and in the east of the Country.
Through the embedded Crime Information Cell, the operation issued to the relevant Law Enforcement agencies 73 recommendations for inspection of suspect vessels in EU Member States’ ports, 56 of which were conducted. These results have demonstrated IRINI’s effectiveness and impartiality.
According to the statement, inspections or friendly approaches are always carried out in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council Resolutions framework, in full respect of the international law, without undermining the vessels’ schedule of activities.