Iraq and Kuwait Navies Sign Pact
Dispatches from the Front:
KUWAIT NAVAL BASE, Kuwait, Dec. 2, 2008 -- Vice Adm. Bill Gortney, Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, traveled to Kuwait’s naval base to witness top leaders from the Iraqi and Kuwaiti navies sign an interoperability protocol, Nov. 11.
Adm. Muhammad Jawad Kadham, Head of the Iraqi Navy and Maj. Gen. Ahmad Yusef Al-Mulla, Head of Kuwaiti Naval Forces signed the Khawr Abd Allah (KAA) interoperability protocol, which governs the two navies’ interaction in the waterway between Kuwait and Iraq.
“This is a historic day for both navies,” said Gortney. “This protocol will give each navy greater flexibility and clear guidelines when patrolling their adjacent waters, which are vital to Maritime Security efforts in the entire Arabian Gulf.”
The KAA interoperability protocol applies to Kuwaiti and Iraqi Navy vessels patrolling in their adjacent waters. Vessels will report any criminal activity in the area, including smuggling and fishing. The protocol also describes a detailed grid in which Kuwaiti and Iraqi vessels will operate.
“I commend General Al-Mulla and Admiral Jawad for taking this important step to deconflict the military operations in this vital waterway.” said Gortney. “This is the first military-to-military protocol, that I am aware of, between an Iraqi military service and a neighboring country.”
Operations in the U.S. Naval Forces Central Command area of operations are focused on developing security in the maritime environment, which promotes stability and global prosperity. These operations complement the counterterrorism and security efforts of regional nations and seek to disrupt violent extremists' use of the maritime environment as a venue for attack or to transport personnel, weapons or other material.
(Report from a Combined Maritime Forces Public Affairs news release.)
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