Crew of HNLMS Groningen train Cape Verdian coastguard
The crew of HNLMS Groningen, one of the Royal Netherlands Navy’s ocean-going patrol vessels, has given a number of maritime awareness training courses to the coastguard personnel of the Cape Verde Islands. Smugglers are making increasing use of the islands as a transhipment location for drugs being transported to Europe.
HNLMS Groningen is on its way from Den Helder to the Caribbean and stopped off at the Cape Verde Islands at the request of the Maritime Analysis and Operations Centre-Narcotics (MAOC-N). This organization represents cooperation between 7 European countries and focuses on fighting drug transports by sea. MAOC-N makes use of navy vessels from its 7 member states for intercepting drug transports on the 3 main drugs routes from South America to West Africa and Europe.
HNLMS Groningen has now continued on its way to the Caribbean. During its 3-week-long transit, the ship will act as the MAOC-N’s eyes and ears on Highway 10, which runs along the tenth parallel and is the shortest sea route between South America and Africa.