The commander of the European Union's (EU) military operation in the Mediterranean, Operation IRINI, Rear admiral, Stefano Turchetto, said that the extension of the operation's mission confirmed that it had achieved important results so far, and revealed the confidence of the member states of the EU that decided that IRINI would continue its work until 2025.

Turchetto added to Italian News Agency NOVA on Wednesday that this extension was an incentive for them to make maximum efforts, saying that they can do so because they realize the importance of their work for protecting the security of Europe and stability in Libya and North Africa.

He also said that the extension decision, issued by the Council of the European Union, confirmed the secondary objectives of the operation, as IRINI would continue to contribute to maritime security, that is, respect for legality in the waters of the Central Mediterranean, and to collect useful information on the illegal trade, not only of arms being shipped to Libya but also regarding the smuggling of oil.

The EU extended on Monday the mandate of its military mission IRINI until March 31, 2025, saying the operation is meant to enforce arms and oil embargo on Libya and fight human trafficking in the Mediterranean Sea at a cost estimated to be €16. 9 million for the upcoming two years.