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    Sailors aboard HMS Richmond stand next to the forward gun as they enter Portsmouth harbor in Portsmouth, England, Friday, Oct. 31, 2014.

    EU Navy Mission to Destroy Smugglers' Boats Has Its Limits & Threats‏

    © AP Photo / Alastair Grant
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    Major Migrant Crisis in Europe (1819)
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    The European Union's military action is poised to enter its second phase using force to capture people smugglers aboard vessels on the high seas. Armed with previously gathered intelligence, European warships will track down boats carrying migrants, arrest the smugglers and confiscate the vessels.

    British naval warship HMS Enterprise will join the mission to stop board and destroy smugglers' boats along with HMS Richmond, a Type 23 frigate with 185 crew on board.

    Helicopters and drones will be used to identify the smugglers' boats.

    But the mission has its limits — and it's threats. Warships will not be able to intercept vessels on Libyan waters where escort boats have been spotted taking migrants out to sea in rubber dinghies before leaving them to sail on.

    Enrico Credendino, head of the "Sophia" military operation has admitted to a parliamentary commission that "we will not manage to arrest traffickers in high seas very often" and "at a certain point they will stop coming out into international waters."

    A United Nations resolution is needed for EU crews to board and seize vessels. The final draft, seen by The Associated Press, would authorize the EU navy to board vessels "with a view to saving the threatened lives of migrants or victims of human trafficking."

    A rubber boat loaded of migrants is seen during a search and rescue mission in the Mediterranean Sea off the Libyan coasts, Italy, Tuesday, June 23, 2015
    © AP Photo / Gregorio Borgia
    A rubber boat loaded of migrants is seen during a search and rescue mission in the Mediterranean Sea off the Libyan coasts, Italy, Tuesday, June 23, 2015

    Classified documents detailing the EU's plan for military intervention, leaked by WikiLeaks, reveals an admission by defense chiefs that they risk losing the EU's reputation if  "loss of life be attributed, correctly or incorrectly, to action or inaction by the EU force."

    Also revealed by Wikileaks is the acknowledgment that EU military force could be used against groups such as Islamic State "within the Libyan sovereign area."

    "The threat to the force should be acknowledged, especially during activities such as boarding and when operating on land or in proximity to an unsecured coastline or during interaction with non-seaworthy vessels. The potential presence of hostile forces, extremists, or terrorists such as Da'esh [ISIL] should also be taken into consideration."

    But to operate on Libyan waters, operation "Sophia" must have authorization from the internationally recognized Libyan government, which has been forced to operate from Tobruk on the eastern border with Egypt after Islamic State militants captured Tripoli last year.

    Migrants crowd the deck of their wooden boat off the coast of Libya May 14, 2015
    © REUTERS / MOAS/Jason Florio/Handout via Reuters
    The civil war between the official government in the east and an Islamist backed government based in Tripoli continues to rage in the oil-rich North African country. The UN is trying to broker a deal for a unity government and bring peace to the country after it fell apart, following the NATO invasion in 2011 and the death of former dictator Muammar Gaddafi.

    Many of the arms used by rebel groups to overthrow Gaddafi are said to be in the hands of ISIL terrorists, who have gained ground in the coastal town of Sirte. So, it's not surprising the EU navy has classified concerns about the possibility of coming face to face with extremists on the water.

    Migrants sit on the deck of the Belgian Navy vessel Godetia after they were saved at sea during a search and rescue mission in the Mediterranean Sea off the Libyan coasts, Wednesday, June 24, 2015.
    © AP Photo / Gregorio Borgia
    Migrants sit on the deck of the Belgian Navy vessel Godetia after they were saved at sea during a search and rescue mission in the Mediterranean Sea off the Libyan coasts, Wednesday, June 24, 2015.

    The UN Security Council is expected to vote later on the European Union's naval plans to stop, board and destroy smugglers' boats and arrest the people smugglers on board, in the hope to destroy their lucrative business model, where humans pay the highest price.

    Topic:
    Major Migrant Crisis in Europe (1819)

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    Tags:
    Daesh, refugee crisis, boats, vessels, sea, smugglers, navy, military operation, leaked documents, army, terrorism, civil war, human trafficking, military, arrest, conflict, war, WikiLeaks, United Nations, European Union, Europe, Mediterranean Sea
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