Gulf of Guinea Nations to Boost Maritime Surveillance
Thursday, November 16, 2006
The AP reported that ministers from across Africa's oil-rich Gulf of Guinea agreed at a U.S.-sponsored meeting Wednesday to establish surveillance systems to try to stamp out illegal activity in their largely unpoliced waters.
Representatives from 11 agreed in a statement to start using tools such as radar and locator transponders on ships to monitor activity off their coasts. The statement was issued during a three-day meeting in Cotonou, Benin, sponsored by U.S. government agencies and military.
The U.S. government has been pushing countries to increase security along the little-watched West African coast, an area of growing importance for U.S. oil interests amid volatility in the Middle East.
The meeting included representatives from Angola, Benin, Cameroon, Republic of Congo, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Ghana, Nigeria, Togo and Sao Tome and Principe