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Operation Sophia

History

Foreign Affairs and Common Security (PESC) decision 2015/778 of the council of May 18 2015 regarding a European Union military operation in the South Central Mediterranean (EUNAVFOR MED)

EUNAVFOR MED operates in accordance with the political, strategic and politico-military objectives established with the purpose of: 

  • Disrupting the business model of people trafficking in the Mediterranean
  • Contributing to the reduction of the great loss of life at sea

Phases

The operation consists of three phases:


Phase 1 (from June 22 to October 6 2015). In the first phase:

  • To support the detection and monitoring of migration networks by means of the collecting of information and patrols at sea, in accordance with international law


Phase 2 (from October 7 2015). In the second phase:

  • To proceed to board, search, seize and divert at sea those vessels suspected of being used for the smuggling or trafficking of people, in accordance with the applicable international law
  • In accordance with any applicable resolution of the United Nations Security Council, or the consent of the coastal state concerned, to proceed to board, search, seize, and divert at sea and in inland waters of the said state, those vessels suspected of being used for the smuggling or trafficking of people, under the conditions established in said resolution or consent

Phase 3: 

  • In accordance with any applicable resolution of the United Nations Security Council, or the consent of the coastal state concerned, to adopt all necessary measures, including the elimination or disabling of a vessel and any related means suspected of being used for the smuggling or trafficking of people in the territory of the said state, under the conditions established in said resolution or consent