Wednesday, September 30, 2009

World Naval Leaders To Talk About Combating Piracy

Naval leaders from around the globe will convene in Newport, Rhode Island, next week to discuss common maritime challenges and opportunities to enhance maritime security cooperation, including combating piracy, US Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Gary Roughead said here Wednesday.

Roughead said Malaysia's Chief of Navy Admiral Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Jaafar, who had accepted the invitation to attend one of the largest gatherings of maritime leaders in history, had been invited to lead a panel discussion at the three-day symposium from Oct. 7.

Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and Thailand had successfully worked together to combat piracy in the Straits of Melaka and in the rest of the region by sharing information and naval cooperation in fighting piracy, leading to a dramatic drop in incidents, he told Bernama.

Both US naval intelligence and the International Maritime Bureau in Kuala Lumpur, which tracks piracy worldwide, reported a decline in sea robbery as navies and coast guards had gone on the offensive.

Malaysia had provided significant contribution in the fight against piracy off Somalia, and the lessons and experiences, and the successful collaborative efforts in Africa would be shared at the upcoming meeting, Roughead said.

Malaysia is part of an international patrol contingent of some two dozen warships from countries, including the US, Russia and members of the European Union, in anti-piracy efforts in the Gulf of Aden.

The biennial 19th International Seapower Symposium this year celebrates the 40th anniversary of the gathering. To date 106 nations have confirmed participation in the event.

For the first time, Russia and Vietnam are sending senior officers as delegates compared with previous years where they sent naval attaches.

Noticeably absent is China. "No, China will not attend," Roughead said.

Source: Bernama

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