On June 25th a series of mentoring and practical exercises with particular focus on Search and Rescue (SAR), organized by EUCAP Nestor in Somaliland, were completed. The training commenced on June 8thincluded practical exercises at sea in the coastal town of Berbera.
The course proved an ideal opportunity to make use of a ‘Rigid Hull Inflatable Boat’ (RHIB) donated by EUCAP Nestor to the Somaliland Coast Guard and put it through its initial tests. The RHIB will initially be used as SAR Training and Control vessel with a dedicated crew trained on its safe and responsible handling. In line with a comprehensive approach towards capacity building in the Horn of Africa, UNODC Engineers, located in Berbera, assisted in preparations prior to launching the RHIB.
Enhanced understanding on the planning and conduct of SAR missions and the most appropriate search techniques plus First Aid training enables a more effective emergency response in case of a real ‘rescue at sea’ scenario. EUCAP Nestor provided fuel to conduct the exercises and donated Fire Fighting equipment.The Somaliland Coast Guard is currently dealing with an increased influx of refugees and returning migrants from Yemen potentially resulting in an increased need for SAR skills and knowledge. EUCAP Nestor specialized SAR training course is likely to help saving lives at sea.
The 2nd SAR Training module is planned for September, and will build on the lessons learned to date. The intention is to earmark and equip one Coast Guard vessel for SAR duties by the end of the 2ndSAR module.“Parallel to the SAR training programme, the Mission was able to deliver the necessary office furniture for the English Language Teaching Laboratory at the Berbera Maritime & Fisheries Academy (BMFA). The end of the SAR training programme coincided with the celebration of the annual ‘International Day of the Seafarer’ organized by the Berbera Maritime & Fisheries Academy, the Coast Guard and EUCAP Nestor. On this occasion the EU missiondonated Maritime books to the Academy library.” The 2nd SAR Training module is planned in September, and will build on the lessons learned to date. The intention is to earmark and equip one Coast Guard vessel for SAR duties by the end of the 2nd SAR module.
EUCAP Nestor is a civilian EU mission, under the auspices of the Common Security and Defence Policy, which assists host countries in the Horn of Africa and Western Indian Ocean region in strengthening their capacity to ensure maritime security and in particular to fight piracy.