Representatives from key stakeholders in the international fight against maritime piracy met in Bahrain, to discuss counter-piracy operations in the Gulf of Aden and Somali Basin.
More than twenty organisations and twenty seven countries were represented at the 24th Shared Awareness and Deconfliction (SHADE) conference. Delegates included senior personnel from partner navies, law enforcement agencies, the shipping industry and various governments. The meeting, held every three months, focuses on improving cooperation and coordination of the maritime forces operating in the region while considering new initiatives and programs designed to disrupt, and ultimately, prevent, future pirate attacks.
The 24th SHADE meeting was hosted by Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) a professional, capable and alert partnership of 26 nations working together in an apolitical environment to create maritime security and stability in the region. CMF’s Chief of Staff, Capt John Carter, U.S. Navy chaired the event which consisted of a number of presentations and discussions that explored topical, innovative and ongoing initiatives to prevent piracy.
In his opening address CMF’s Chief of Staff, Captain Carter stated that:
“The current success is as a result of the cumulative effort of all stakeholders”. He went on to say, “this progress remains reversible and now is not the time to lessen the tempo of operations”. He also welcomed the contributions from all nations who have devoted assets to make the seas safer for legitimate maritime trade.
SHADE is also gathering momentum reflected by the increase in geographical interest, with more than 100 representatives in attendance.
SHADE participants meet regularly in Bahrain which is the base of the Combined Maritime Forces. The next SHADE will be held in September 2012.
The SHADE concept was established in December 2008, to coordinate the efforts of the many military forces conducting counter-piracy operations including escorting convoys of merchant vessels in the region.