The incoming Commander of the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) maritime security and counter-terrorism task force, Combined Task Force 150 (CTF-150), conducted successful staff talks with the US Naval Forces Europe-Africa (NAVEUR-NAVAF) Command in Naples, Italy, on 1 December 2014.
During the visit, Commodore Brian Santarpia and his staff met with Chief of Staff to Commander NAVEUR-NAVAF / Deputy Chief of Staff for Strategy, Resources and Plans NAVEUR-NAVAF, Rear Admiral John Nowell, before taking part in briefings and discussions that also involved key headquarters staff.
NAVAF leads the African Partnership Station (APS), a framework that collaboratively plans and coordinates maritime operations and theatre security cooperation activities to improve maritime safety and security in Africa. Command and staff level engagement during the visit enhanced mutual understanding, strengthened planning and coordination relationships, and allowed for the determination of opportunities for CTF-150 to compliment NAVAF efforts on the east coast of Africa during the Canadian command. Opportunities include, but are not limited to, important elements such as capacity building, focussed training, Exercise Cutless Express 2015 participation, and key leadership engagements.
Combined Maritime Forces and NAVEUR-NAVAF share a long and enduring partnership. Both organizations have a mandate to assist African navies to secure the sea lines of communication through establishment of regional and local maritime capabilities.
“Oceans are vast and all maritime nations ultimately face the same threats and challenges. A united effort is required to make sure the busiest ship routes in the world stay safe and secure for all seafarers”, said the incoming CTF-150 Commander. “This close collaboration between commands and staffs involved in cooperating with maritime nations to further safety and security at sea is critical. I greatly appreciate the discussion with Rear Admiral Nowell and NAVEUR-NAVAF staff about future opportunities to work together.”
Commodore Brian Santarpia from the Royal Canadian Navy assumed command of CTF-150 on 4 December, 2014.