Operation Sophia is officially meant to disrupt human trafficking routes however, the leaks suggest something entirely different.
WikiLeaks released a classified report detailing Operation Sophia, an operation by the European Union against the refugee inflow in Europe. It also outlines certain plans to develop a reliable government in Libya which will allow European Union to expand activities in the region. The crisis in the Middle East and certain parts of Asia made millions of people relocate into other parts of the world, with EU being the primary destination. The journey to EU was not easy, and we may know why.
Read: European Migrant Crisis
The report on Operation Sophia was leaked on the 29th January, 2016. It was written by the operation’s commander, Rear Admiral Enrico Credendino of the Italian Navy. It was written for the European Union Military Committee, and the Political and Security Committee of the EU. The document would provide statistics on the flow of refugees and details of planned operation phases of the join EU forces operating within the Mediterranean.
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) February 17, 2016
The report also lands extreme pressure on the EU authorities to speed up the process whereby a reliable government could be established in Libya. The document detailing certain measures to be taken under Operation Sophia stated,
Through the capability and capacity building of the Libyan Navy and Coastguard we will be able to give the Libyan authorities something in exchange for their cooperation in tackling the irregular migration issue. This collaboration could represent one of the elements of the EU comprehensive approach to help secure their invitation to operate inside their territory during Phase 2 activities.
Admiral Credendino, in reference to Phase 2B states,
We are ready to move to phase 2B (Territorial Waters) where we can make a more significant impact on the smuggler and traffickers business model… However, in order to move into the following phases we need to have a government of national accord with which to engage… A suitable legal finish is absolutely fundamental to the transition of phase 2B (Territorial Waters) as without this, we cannot be effective… Central to this and to the whole transition to phase 2B, is an agreement with the Libyan authorities. Ultimately they have the casting vote on the legal finish which will in turn drive the transition to phase 2B and the appetite for Member States to provide assets. As a European Union, we must therefore apply diplomatic pressure appropriately to deliver the correct outcome.
This particular leak comes in a meager five months after it was reported that Operation Sophia would consist of 22 member states and 1,300 personnel. European Union Institute for Security Studies stated in a document that Operation Sophia started on the 27th July of 2015 and that its core purpose was not to stop the migration inflow but disrupt smuggling routes by human traffickers. The curious part is where the leaks suggest that the operation revolves around a reliable government in Libya which would allow EU to expand activities in the region.You can follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+ for more updates. Otherwise fill in the subscription box above, or subscribe to our RSS Feed.