Commodore Charles McHardie visited the Seychelles recently as part of a regional engagement program to improve maritime security in the Combined Maritime Forces operational area.

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CDRE McHardie at the Seychelles People’s Defence Force Headquarters with (from L to R) Brigadier Leopold Payet, Chief of Defence Forces COL Clifford Roseline, Chief of Staff LTCOL Michael Rosette, Deputy Chief of Staff LTCOL George Adeline, Commanding Officer of the Seychelles Coast Guard

The Republic of the Seychelles joined Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) in September 2012 and is the newest partner nation to the CMF.

Commodore McHardie met with Vice President Danny Faure to discuss the significant Seychelles contribution to improving maritime security in the region.

“While the Seychelles is new to the CMF partnership, their commitment to regional maritime security is well established,” Commodore McHardie said.

Commodore McHardie also met with representatives of the Seychelles cabinet, Mr Joel Morgan, Minister for Home Affairs and Transport, and Mr Jean-Paul Adam, Minister for Foreign Affairs.

They discussed current security concerns, the maritime security role of the Seychelles as a leader in the East African and the CTF 150 mission.  Opportunities were also discussed for the Seychelles People’s Defence Forces to work with CTF 150 operating in the region.

“The visit provided a valuable opportunity to meet with Brigadier Leopold Payet the Chief of Defence Forces and Lieutenant Colonel George Adeline the Commanding Officer of the Seychelles Coast Guard,” Commodore McHardie said.

“CTF 150 now has a better understanding of the capabilities of their respective forces.

“The depth of knowledge about the regional maritime environment that the Seychellois have imparted will be invaluable to the success of future operations.

“I am most appreciative to have had the opportunity to discuss how we can progress maritime security issues with our newest partner.”

During his visit to the Seychelles Commodore McHardie met with Captain Bjorne Maher of the Swedish Coast Guard ‘Bluebird’ detachment.

This detachment of maritime reconnaissance aircraft provides a significant contribution to the counter-piracy operations conducted by CMF, the European Union and the Northern Atlantic Treaty Organisation.

“The Bluebird team is operating at a high operational tempo a very long way from home and they should be proud of their contribution to the safety of mariners in the region,” Commodore McHardie said.

CTF150 is one of three task forces operated by CMF involving 27 nations in the naval partnership.

The CMF mission is to promote security, stability and prosperity across the Arabian Gulf, the Gulf of Oman, the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean.  The area encompasses some of the world’s most important shipping lanes.