Photo of the week: Welcome home


There were tearful reunions on the Flemish coast this week as the naval ship Godetia returned home for the first time in six months

Threatened by Russia

Clutching a drawing in his other hand, five-year-old Marcel Broeckx waves to his father as he disembarks from Godetia in the port of Zeebrugge earlier this week. The crew aboard the ship, part of the Belgian naval component, returned home this week following a stint of six months at sea.

The command and logistical support ship was part of the Nato de-mining group 1 and made headlines last month when two armed Russian fighter jets made three passes very low right next to the vessel in the Baltic sea. The ship’s captain, Peter Ramboer, kept his cool, telling the ships in his command not to retaliate in any way.

“I wouldn’t want to be instigator of the Third World War because we made a false assumption,” he told VRT following the incident.

The Godetia was the flagship of the de-mining operation, with Ramboer commanding the entire fleet of 13 ships from 11 countries. The fleet operated for more than 10 months this year along the west coast of France, in the North Sea and the English Channel and on the west coast of Norway to above the Arctic Circle, as well as in the Baltic.