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Jordan Steps Up Naval Security Role in the Middle East

international maritime security construct

Jordan has taken another step toward enhancing its role in naval security in the Middle East, with the Royal Jordanian Navy’s membership in the International Maritime Security Construct as its latest initiative.

Jordan is also a member of the 38-nation Combined Maritime Forces, another Mideast-based naval security partnership in the region’s major international shipping lanes. CMF’s main focus areas include regional cooperation against piracy, smuggling and drug trafficking, while IMSC’s efforts are directed at preventing attacks on commercial vessels.

According to Col. Hisham Khaleel Al-Jarrah, commander of the Royal Jordanian Naval Force, the IMSC membership continues Jordan’s “commitment to the collective responsibility of maritime security in the Middle East.”

“From this standpoint and in order to effectively confront the multifarious challenges this region faces in the complex maritime environment of the 21st century, we are excited to join the IMSC team,” he said in a statement announcing the move.

The new addition brings the coalition’s total members to 12, which include Albania, Bahrain, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Seychelles, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the United States. Led by the U.S. Naval Central Forces Command, IMSC is based in Manama.

U.S. Navy Vice Adm. Brad Cooper, commander of NAVCENT, U.S. 5th Fleet and Combined Maritime, noted that Jordan is a crucial player in the maritime security partnership because it has a long-standing history of contributing significantly to the security and stability of the region.

The IMSC commander, British Royal Navy Cdre. Peter Laughton, also welcomed Jordan to the coalition, highlighting its track record of “championing the international rules-based order,” which he said would enable IMSC to continue its vital mission.

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