NSG Attends CABSEC 13 Maritime Security Seminar
In March 2013 NSG Chairman Stephen Hobson attended the first CABSEC meeting, held in Curaçao.
Sponsored by DAMEN our maritime partner, the Caribbean Basin Coastal Surveillance and Maritime Security conference brought together the military and defence community as well as regional powers and diplomatic representatives.
There is a growing importance in Caribbean Basin Maritime Security for subjects matters like drug enforcement, protection of maritime environment, protection of fishing resources, prevention of illegal traffic of WMD, repression of piracy and prevention of illegal migration.
Interchanges were shared between senior military, civilian and industry experts from around the Caribbean, Central and South America. Discussions included the advantages and logistical challenges of ship-rider agreements. Also reviewed were the Regional Maritime Agreement, Capacity building, and modernization in Suriname, Trinidad & Tobago, Barbados and the Bahamas Defence Forces and Coast Guards
This three-day seminar included a Focus Day on Counter-Narcotics Operations with several panel discussions on various topics, including Narco-Terrorism. There was also a presentation by DAMEN’s Wim Boerma on the Sea-Axe: Versatile and Cost Effective Platforms for Naval Security.
The seminar allowed attendees the opportunity to network with peers and leaders throughout all levels of the military and private sector. Speakers included Brigadier General Dick A. Swijgman Commander Netherlands Forces in the Caribbean; Lieutenant General Guy Thibault, Chair, Inter-American Defence Board (IADB) OAS; Ambassador Robert Kopecký, Delegation of the European Commission to Guyana Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago and the Dutch Overseas Countries and Territories EEAS amongst many others.
Also present was the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of National Security in The Bahamas, Carl Smith, who signed a Letter of Intent with DAMEN Shipyards to acquire a new fleet of vessels for the Royal Bahamas Defence Force.
Delegates were treated to a live demonstration of the assets of the Dutch Coast Guard in Curaçao and were also encouraged to board the DAMEN’s 1102 Fast-Interceptor for a short sea-bound demo.