The UK Royal Navy has deployed HMS Trent (P224) to West Africa to help counter piracy and smuggling in the Gulf of Guinea.
The Trent’s mission is backed by maritime forces from West African nations, utilizing 700X Naval Air Squadron Puma drones to provide wider patrol groups in the area.
The ship is manned by the Royal Marines’ 42 Commando, a maritime specialist team trained in conducting security, support, and training operations for UK overseas partners.
Apart from patrolling the gulf, P224 also participated in Grand African Nemo, a multinational exercise that promotes security through strategic naval interoperability.
Naval forces from Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, and Senegal joined the ship in reconnaissance and surveillance drills.
“After spending the last few months operating off West Africa contributing to Maritime Security Operations, to be able to build on this by participating in such a large exercise to develop the security infrastructure and contribute to boarding training has been very satisfying,” said HMS Trent Operations Officer Lieutenant Ben Hunter.
The vessel also conducted a port visit to Cote d’Ivoire, the first stop in the country by the Royal Navy in 11 years.
In the fight against piracy and smuggling.
The #RoyalNavy's @HMSTrent has completed a mission in West African waters, strengthening bonds and training allies and partners in the fight against illegal activity that harms the region and disrupts shipping bound for the UK.
— Royal Navy (@RoyalNavy) October 17, 2023