Commander Combined Task Force 151 (CTF 151) and regional counter-piracy coordinator, Rear Admiral Daisuke Kajimoto, Japan Maritime Self Defence Force (JMSDF), has completed a six-day engagement tour of Kuwait, Oman and the UAE. Starting the week by attending the Maritime Information Exchange Vessel Owners’ Meeting (MIEVOM), he then conducted a series of meetings with the key military leaders of three Gulf states, developing counter-piracy cooperation and strengthening Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) relationships with other regional forces operating in the maritime domain.

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The MIEVOM is a biannual meeting hosted by UK Maritime Security Operations in Dubai, providing a forum for the sharing of maritime security related information between ship owners, risk analysts and military organisations such as CMF. RAdm Kajimoto’s presence provided the opportunity for him to understand more about shipping companies’ top risks and to inform them of the work CTF 151 is doing to establish, promote and protect freedom of navigation and free flow of commerce for all legitimate seafarers in the region.

Commenting on his visit, RAdm Kajimoto said that “the chance to exchange ideas with the shipping community has been highly valuable; this kind of interaction is essential for the continued development of more effective maritime security techniques”.

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The visit to the UAE concluded with a meeting with the Chief of Staff of the UAE Armed Forces, Lieutenant General Hamad Mohammed Thani Al Rumaithi and the Commander of the UAE Navy, Rear Admiral (Pilot) Saeed bin Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Nahyan in Abu Dhabi.

RAdm Kajimoto continued to Muscat to conduct meetings with the Acting Commander of the Royal Navy of Oman, Commodore Said bin Abdullah bin Salim Al Saadi and the Assistant Inspector General of the Royal Omani Police, Major General Hamad bin Sulaiman Al Hatmi. Oman, although not a member of CMF, is a valuable partner in maritime security operations through the generous provision of port and airfield facilities.  It was agreed that the exchange of information and participation in combined exercises should continue to develop as the most recent anti-piracy exercises prove.

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The final stop was Kuwait, during which RAdm Kajimoto met Lieutenant General Mohammed Al Khadher, Chief of Staff of the Kuwait Armed Forces and Brigadier General Khaled Al Abdullah, Commander of the Kuwait Naval Force. Given that Kuwait has experience in commanding CMF task forces and is due to take command of CTF 152 in the next year, the meeting provided a valuable opportunity to exchange ideas.

The Japan-led CTF 151 is now at the half-way point of its tenure in CMF and has just commenced a Focused Operation known as 3 Arrows, in cooperation with CTF 150 and EUNAVFOR. This brings together assets from the whole region to concentrate efforts as the monsoon season approaches, maximising the CMF Maritime Security Operations mission and proving our ability to work effectively in cooperation.