The Portuguese submarine “Tridente” set off today on a two-month mission to the Mediterranean Sea, which “discreetly” aims to gather information to help combat drug and human trafficking. .
“The great advantage of the submarine is really, to do it discreetly without changing the environment, that is, we are in the place and the prevaricator does not know that there is the submarine to gather information”, explained the commander Ribeiro da Paz .
The military was speaking to reporters at the Lisbon Naval Base in Almada, Setúbal district, at the 32-man farewell ceremony at the start of the mission over the next 60 days to gather “vital information” on arms, drug trafficking and people.
Still, he said, the submarine “has no immediate counter-ordinating action”, only collects “information in the area” to pass on to “Atlantic Alliance partners who will act at sea with surface or land means”.
This is a mission within NATO’s “Sea Guardian” operations, which is more focused on illicit arms and narcotics trafficking, and the “Shopia”, which the European Union has put in place to combat illegal migration.
It was a match in a heavy fog, but with “the morale of the garrison always on top,” because, “in a narrow corridor like the interior space of the submarine, everyone should be in a good mood,” said the commander.
The Minister of National Defense, João Gomes Cravinho, attended the ceremony, stressing that, through this mission, Portugal is “contributing to make the Mediterranean a little safer”.
“This is a very important operation because we all know the daily tragedies in the Mediterranean, human tragedies and also some sources of insecurity that also affect Portugal,” he explained.
According to the official, security in this area “had some improvement” last year, but “the broader conditions remain, namely the insecurity in North Africa and also great difficulties on the African continent that are a source of migration to Europe” .
At the end of its participation in these operations, the Tridente submarine conducts an exercise in southern Spain with the Spanish Navy, which, according to Gomes Cravinho, “strengthens the joint capacity to combat the scourges, which are the same.”
The return of the “Trident” to the Lisbon Naval Base is scheduled for March.