The Royal Saudi Navy (RSN) today handed over command of Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) Combined Task Force 152 (CTF152) to the Kuwait Coast Guard (KCG). This took place at a formal ‘Change of Command Ceremony’ at the CMF Headquarters in Bahrain.

This is the first time a CTF is under the command of a coastguard. Kuwait has had a constant presence in CMF with her Navy previously commanding CTF152 in 2009 and 2012, and thus, sharing their excellent knowledge of local maritime affairs in the Arabian Gulf.

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Captain Albader RSN hands over the dagger of command to Captain Alfodary KCG under the watch of Vice Admiral Stearney, USN and Commander of CMF.

The ceremony was presided over by Vice Admiral Scott Stearney USN, Commander US Naval Forces Central Command, Commander US Fifth Fleet and Commander Combined Maritime Forces.

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CTF152 are responsible for maritime security and counter terrorism within the Arabian Gulf, as well as building cooperation between Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries and the wider CMF. While the Kuwait Coastguard will have command, they have military personnel from Bahrain, Jordan, UAE, Saudi Arabia, the UK and the US on the staff, making them a true coalition, working together to enhance regional maritime security.

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The Royal Saudi Navy (left) hand over command of CTF152 to the Kuwaiti Coast Guard (right).

On handing over command, Captain Abdullah Al Bader RSN said: “Over this year, there have been no obstructions to the free flow of commerce, no restrictions placed on the freedom of navigation and no terrorist or criminal operations with the Arabian Gulf. This could not have remained the case without the efforts provided by the CMF members.”

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On assuming command, Captain Alfodary said: “I plan to develop a strong relationship and share information with all the task forces, units and personnel to achieve our tasks. I have faith, a huge amount of trust in all my staff and a strong relationship with each single individual and I believe in them to help me reach my intention. We stand as one!”

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Captain Alfodary addresses the audience with his plan for command of CTF152