Between 25-28 July 17, the Commander of CTF 151, Rear Admiral Emre Sezenler, Turkish Navy, travelled to Djibouti to engage with representatives of the Djiboutian Armed Forces and foreign military personnel based in Djibouti.
Key Leadership Engagement (KLE) is a core component of CTF 151’s mission. The engagement facilitates and promotes cooperation with Combined Maritime Forces’ regional partners, which include nations around our Area of Operations that participate in combating piracy.
Closer cooperation can include information sharing, capacity building and training exercises between CTF 151 warships and local maritime security forces during port visits. In this context, during the port visit in Djibouti, Turkish Navy Ship TCG Giresun conducted a capacity building activity, including visit, board, search and seizure (VBSS) training with the Djibouti Navy on 27 July.
During the first day, Rear Admiral Sezenler visited the Pakistan Navy Ship (PNS) Alamgir, one of the CTF 151 assets. This was followed on day two by a visit to the Ambassador of Turkey, Ambassador Sadi Altinok, to discuss the dynamics of Djibouti. A courtesy call to the Commander of Armed Forces of Djibouti (Major General Zakaria Cheikh Ibrahim), accompanied by Commander of Navy (Colonel Abdourrahman Aden Cher), and Acting Commander of Coast Guard (Captain Mohammed Adawa) was also made. In this meeting Admiral Sezenler reaffirmed the continued commitment of CMF to regional maritime security, and explained: “As CMF, we appreciate Djibouti’s continued support in terms of sea and air port access”.
The KLE visits where scheduled to coordinate with the CTF 465 Change of Command ceremony, which was held onboard the Spanish ship, SPS Galicia which Admiral Sezenler attended. After the ceremony, a coordination meeting was conducted with the EU NAVFOR team and the significance of coordination against piracy was emphasized. In this meeting, EU NAVFOR units were also invited to participate in CTF 151 comprehensive exercises, including Focused Operation and Counter Piracy Validation Exercises, to be held later in the year. Furthermore, Admiral Sezenler met other military represantatives during a reception organized by the Ambassador of Turkey.
The local Japanese facility accommodating a Japanese P3 detachment (Deployment Air-Force for Counter-Piracy Enforcement or ‘DAPE’) was also visited. The contribution of DAPE to counter piracy operations was emphasised and Admiral Sezenler had chance to meet Japanese pilots and flight crew.
Commander of French Forces in Djibouti (FFDj) Brig.Gen. Thierry Duquenoy and Deputy Commander of Combined Joint Task Force (CJTF-Horn of Africa) Brig.Gen. Phil Purcell were also called on. Such visits establish a vital line of communication between organisations with overlapping objectives so that they can mutually support each other.
On the final day of KLE Admiral Sezenler organized a lunch onboard TCG Giresun with the attendance of Ambassador Of Turkey to Djibouti and Commanders of Navy and Coast Guard of Djibouti.