Delegates Call for Maritime Security Cooperation

By Edward Lundquist
Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Maritime security conference delegates have a shared understanding of threats, need for cooperation

Offshore Patrol Vessels Middle East 2013 delegates acknowledge success in fighting pirates, but many treats and challenges exists in region

Attendees at the IQPC Offshore Patrol Vessels Middle East 2013 conference agree that what happens at sea in the Arabian Gulf and the Middle East has implications that ripple, or more correctly rumble throughout the globe. Speakers and panelists underscored the importance of maritime domain awareness and security for military, commercial, legal and environmental reasons, and how they are all connected.

The IQPC Offshore Patrol Vessel conference at the Jumeirah at Etihad Towers in Abu Dhabi is being attended by naval, coast guard, security, and other maritime and military professionals. The conference is being chaired by Rear Admiral (R) Ahmed Al Sabab Al Teneiji, former chief of naval forces for the UAE Navy.

In a keynote address, Major General (R) Ahmad Yusuf Al Mulla, Advisor to the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense of Kuwait said that the next 20 years will see rapid change, and instability from religious and ethnic tensions, and competition for all kinds of resources, thus prompting a need to share information and resources. The Iran Revolutionary Guard Navy has threatened to close the Strait of Hormuz, creating what he called a “dangerous situation.” But, he said, “We can’t be held to ransom by threats.”

“This region is of strategic importance,” said Commodore Keith Blount RN, United Kingdom Maritime Component Commander and Deputy Commander Combined Maritime Forces, based in Bahrain. “About $1 trillion (USD) worth of trade passes through Gulf of Aden each year. It’s a huge area, and a huge challenge. This is a team sport. No one nation can do it alone.”

Noting the presence of Vice Admiral Osama El-Gendy, Chief of Naval Forces for the Egyptian Navy, Blount had praise for the Egyptian Navy in protecting the Suez Canal and Bab el Mandeb strait that separates the Red Sea from the Indian Ocean.

Pakistan sits just outside the entrance to the Arabian Gulf and astride the “world’s energy highways,” said Rear Admiral Ather Mukhtar SI(M),Director General of the Pakistan Maritime Security Agency.

Maritime security in the region is especially challenging, Mukhtar said, as after 9/11, poor governance, social injustice and interstate security disputes resulted in a volatile regional security matrix.

“Our job is the protect Pakistan’s exclusive economic zone and ensure free flow of commerce for all nations,” Mukhtar said. “It’s important for the global economy.”

Mukhtar pointed out that nations like Pakistan and other countries, even those far from the Gulf, have contributed to naval anti-piracy patrols, and in many cases contributing and even commanding coalition task forces. Such task forces have been conducted under the auspices of NATO, the European Union (EU), and the Combined Maritime Force. Additionally, individual nations have conducted deployments to the region to counter the piracy threat, but have worked out cooperative strategies to make all the forces more effective.

According to Colonel Martin Cauchi-Inglott from Malta’s Defense Force, branch chief and assistant chief of staff for external relations on the EU Military Staff, the EU is conducting three such multi-national operations, including EUNAVFOR Atalanta; EUTM Somalia and EUCAP Nestor. In Atalanta, EU NAVFOR’s mandate is to protect of World Food Program (WFP) vessels delivering aid to displaced persons in Somalia and the protection of African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) shipping. “We are dedicated to the detection, deterrence, prevention and repression of piracy,” Cauchi-Inglott said.

And, he added, naval patrols and the increase of armed security aboard ships have reduced the number of successful pirate attacks. “But diminished piracy success should not be misinterpreted. There are still 50 crewmembers being held for ransom. The pirates are adapting to opportunities and challenges.”

In delivering his keynote address, Vice Admiral John W Miller, Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, U.S. Fifth Fleet and the Combined Maritime Forces, said piracy has become an area of agreement among nations. “No one likes piracy,” Miller said. “But I’m not sure you ever reach an end state on piracy.”

And while he agreed that the multinational response to piracy has been effective, the number of nations involved is actually growing. During his remarks, Miller announced that the Yemeni Coast Guard had just accepted an invitation to be 30th member of Combined Maritime Force.

The conference attendees, sponsors and exhibitors included a number of ship builders, systems and service providers.

Dr. Khaled Al Mazrouei, Chief Executive Officer of Abu Dhabi Ship Building, said 80 million people live on or nearby the Arabian Gulf which had become a “commercial superhighway.”He discussed the importance of building relationships with industrial stakeholders and military services. “The navies and coast guards are not customers, but active partners.”

“No shipyard can or should do all required functions alone,” Al Mazrouei said.

Taking place in the busy Arabian Gulf port city of Abu Dhabi, the conference is examining security challenges and priorities through the Middle East, Africa, and the world. The third and final day of the conference will focus on coastal surveillance.

opvmiddleeast.com

Edward Lundquist is a retired U.S. Navy captain who has written extensively on maritime, naval and security issues. He is the moderator of OPV Middle East 2013.
 

Maritime Reporter August 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Navy

Video: Submarine John Warner Launched for Testing

Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) launched the Virginia-class submarine John Warner (SSN 785) into the James River on September 10 at the company's Newport News Shipbuilding division,

Today in U.S. Naval History: September 17

Today in U.S. Naval History - September 17 1861 - Union landing party from USS Massachusetts takes possession of Ship Island, Mississippi. This was the headquarters for Adm.

Bulgarian Naval Academy Installs VSTEP Simulators

The Nikola Vaptsarov Naval Academy in Varna purchased a 360° Class A Full Mission Bridge simulator and an Incident Management Simulator for training of its Naval and Merchant marine students.

Maritime Security

MARAD to Mark the Return of MV Cape Ray

Maritime (MARAD) Administrator Paul N. Jaenichen will host a ceremony on Friday, September 19, 2014 in Portsmouth, Va. to honor the civilian crew who helped to

Video: Submarine John Warner Launched for Testing

Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) launched the Virginia-class submarine John Warner (SSN 785) into the James River on September 10 at the company's Newport News Shipbuilding division,

Bangladeshi Albedo Survivors Helped by their Govt.

Yesterday, 16th September 2014, Chirag Bahri, MPHRP's Regional Director for South Asia, attended a ceremonial event organised by the Ministry of Shipping, Bangladesh

News

Prime Minister Solberg Visits DNV GL

Norway’s Prime Minister Erna Solberg visited DNV GL Høvik yesterday, September 16. Group President & CEO Henrik Madsen was host. “The Prime Minister was both

MARAD to Mark the Return of MV Cape Ray

Maritime (MARAD) Administrator Paul N. Jaenichen will host a ceremony on Friday, September 19, 2014 in Portsmouth, Va. to honor the civilian crew who helped to

Houston Shipping and Offshore Conference Program Announced

The fourth Houston Shipping and Offshore Conference has announced the final program for its Friday, October 10 conference at the Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa, 111 N.

Coast Guard

Lake Charles Tugboat Engine Room Fire Extinguished

The Coast Guard informs that along with the Black Bayou Fire Department it has responded to a tugboat on fire near Lake Charles, Louisiana. At approximately 1:15 p.

Maritime Academy Awarded DHS Grant for Arctic Training

Maine Maritime Academy receives $450,000 grant From U.S. Department of Homeland Security for ice navigation and maritime first responder courses for the Arctic Maine

Great Lakes Dry Cargo Residue Discharge Rule in Effect

The U.S. Coast Guard published a final rule to the Federal Register announcing that it has received approval from the Office of Management and Budget for an information

Middle East

Mideast Crude Tanker Rates Near 3-month Low

Crude oil tanker earnings on the major Middle East route fell to their lowest in nearly three months as a slowdown in business in recent days battered rate sentiment.

Marlink VSATs Chosen for UASC Containerships

United Arab Shipping Company (UASC) has selected WaveCall Plus VSAT (Very Small Aperture Terminal) services from Marlink to provide reliable connectivity for its new build fleet of 17 containerships,

Saudi Shipper Bahri Names Omar as CEO

The National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia (Bahri) has named Ibrahim Abdulrahman al-Omar as its chief executive, effective on Oct. 1, a bourse filing said on Wednesday.

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Standards Naval Architecture Offshore Oil Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Ship Simulators Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.2187 sec (5 req/sec)