On Wednesday, December 4, India gifted the indigenously made patrol vessel CGS Kaamiyaabu to the Maldives National Defense Coast Guard, in order to enhance maritime security in the the Indian Ocean archipelago. It is said that the vessel will be manned by eight Maldives personnel which will be trained in India other than establishing maritime security in the region, it aims to foster its blue economy and safeguard its tourism industry. The initiatives were formally announced during the past year and were launched through a video conference, earlier this week.
The EU Council officially adopted the Commission’s proposal to reinforce the European Border and Coast Guard, in a bid to respond to the challenges facing Europe in managing migration and its external borders. The European Border and Coast Guard Agency will have a standing corps of 10,000 border guards.
On 21 May, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency, in collaboration with Albania, will launch its first joint operation on the territory of a non-EU country. This will be the first operation of its kind, marking a new phase for border cooperation between the EU and Western Balkan partners. The negotiations on a Status Agreement on border cooperation between the European Border and Coast Guard and Albania started in December 2017.
EMSA Executive Director, Maja Markovčić Kostelac, visited the headquarters of Frontex, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency, where she met with its Executive Director Fabrice Leggeri to discuss collaboration on the development of European coast guard functions and other forms of cooperation between the two agencies.
The crew of a Coast Guard Air Station Miami HC-144 Ocean Sentry, deployed to Coast Guard Air Station Borinquen, Puerto Rico, detected a vessel on January 7. Watchstanders with Coast Guard Sector San Juan diverted the Coast Guard Cutter Heriberto Hernandez (WPC-1114), who arrived on scene, and embarked 35 migrants. The Coast Guard discovered a backpack with 4 kilograms of heroin floating near the vessel.
On Wednesday, over 90,000 contraband packs of cigarettes were ceased by Port officials and the Greek Police in port of Patras. According to local reports, the driver and his illicit cargo were heading to Italy.
Italy’s minister of the interior, Matteo Salvini, has allowed migrants of the Italian Coast Guard ship ‘Ubaldo Diciotti’ to disembark, after he was placed under formal investigation regarding their detention. Mr. Salvini has been formally placed under investigation for potential illegal detention and kidnapping.
Italy will allow its coast guard ship ‘Ubaldo Diciotti,’ carrying 177 rescued migrants to dock in Catania, Sicily. This comes after a standoff with Malta over where the ship should disembark. However, there are reports that the interior minister Matteo Salvini will not allow the migrants to disembark until he is assured that they will go elsewhere.
The Comoros-flagged vessel which allegedly refused to obey instructions ordered by the Libyan Coast Guard, while underway in the area of Bukhamash, west of Zuwarah, has reappeared on the radars in Malta.
Frontex, EMSA and EFCA signed a Tripartite Working Arrangement in an effort to strengthen their cooperation on coast guard functions. The agreement sets out the framework for the synergy between the European agencies which will enable them to support in “an effective and cost-efficient way” the activities of more than 300 civilian and military authorities in the EU member states.
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