The mission of HMS Trent, which departed from Gibraltar, is multifaceted.
Lagos, [Date] – In a significant move to combat illegal activities, including piracy and illicit trafficking in the Gulf of Guinea, the Royal Navy warship, HMS Trent, arrived in Lagos on Sunday, September 10, 2023.
This marks the ship’s second visit to Nigeria, according to a statement by the British High Commission.
It’s mission in Nigeria
The mission of HMS Trent, which departed from Gibraltar, is multifaceted. It aims to provide capacity training and support for maritime security in the sub-region. The vessel carries an expert boarding team of UK Royal Marines and a Puma surveillance drone, enhancing its capabilities to combat criminal activities at sea.
One of the primary objectives of HMS Trent’s deployment is to assist West African allies in developing their maritime security capabilities. By doing so, it ensures that these countries can effectively contribute to bringing stability to the wider West African region.
Commander Tim Langford, the Commanding Officer of HMS Trent, expressed his honor at returning to Nigeria and highlighted the significance of the visit in the ship’s three-month deployment to West Africa. He stated, “We are excited to work with our partner nations as we strive for a long-term solution to maritime insecurity across the region.”
The Royal Navy’s engagement in the region has a storied history, and this deployment builds on the enduring partnership with the Armed Forces of Nigeria. The visit aims to strengthen the relationships established during HMS Trent’s previous visit to Lagos in 2021.
Jonny Baxter, the UK Deputy High Commissioner in Lagos, emphasized the importance of the deployment in addressing shared international security challenges. He stated, “Nigeria is an important and valued defense partner for the UK in West Africa. Our two countries face many shared threats, and we are keen to work with Nigeria to defeat these and to help improve maritime security in the Gulf of Guinea.”
HMS Trent’s deployment aligns with the broader international effort led by the Friends of the Gulf of Guinea (FOGG). This initiative supports Gulf of Guinea nations in implementing regional maritime security frameworks, ultimately contributing to stability in a region that has witnessed disruptions to international shipping, threats to seafarers’ lives, and damage to local economies.
With approximately £6 billion of UK trade passing through the Gulf of Guinea, HMS Trent’s mission plays a pivotal role in ensuring the security and stability of this vital maritime corridor.