Personnel from the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) met with representatives from the United Nations Somalia and Eritrean Monitoring Group (UNSEMG) to gain a better understanding of each organisations effort within the Somali region.
The visit by the UNSEMG to CMF was the first of its kind, and involved a two-day workshop where personnel from CMF headquarters and staff from Combined Task Force (CTF) 150 and 151 met with Dr Jarat Chopra, Mr Jorg Roofthoot and Mr Dinesh Mahtani, UNSEMG representatives.
Commodore Daryl Bates, Commander of CMF’s Counter-Terrorism task force, CTF 150, said: “CMF and UNSEMG come at this challenge from different perspectives, but we both ultimately have the same aims, a stable, functioning Somalia. Like our recent meetings with the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, these meetings have been a great opportunity for CMF to work with the UN to address the many challenges that plague the Horn of Africa.”
After receiving detailed briefs about each other’s roles and functions, much of the discussion was focused on the issue of illegal smuggling of charcoal from Somalia, in contravention of UN Security Council Resolutions, and how CMF and the UN could work together to combat this complex problem.
Commodore Aage Buur Jensen, Royal Danish Navy, Commander of CMF’s Counter-Piracy task force, CTF 151, said:”The work done by UNSEMG was indeed an eye opener mapping the connection between the terrorist groups in different places, the organised crime and the different criminal activities we are seeing in the maritime domain in this region. We should work together to find the right pressure points to stop the criminals from exploiting the high seas.”
CMF is a 30-nation maritime partnership working to defeat terrorism, prevent piracy, reduce illegal trafficking of people and drugs, and promote the maritime environment as a safe place for mariners with legitimate business.
CTF 150’s role is to maintain maritime security and conduct operations to disrupt and deter terrorism and terrorism-related activities in the maritime regions of the Middle East and Indian Ocean.
CTF 151’s mission is to disrupt piracy and armed robbery at sea and to engage with regional and other partners to build capacity and improve relevant capabilities in order to protect global maritime commerce and secure freedom of navigation.