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Brazil becomes the 33rd nation to join Combined Maritime Forces

The Barroso.Brazil has been welcomed to the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) family to become the 33rd nation to join the team.

Brazil are no strangers to CMF, having had a number of liaison officers work over the years within the organization to develop skills and understanding of how CMF works, Combined Maritime Forces said on 12 August.

Commander Joao Prudencio Enes of the Brazilian Navy becomes the first officer to act as the Senior National Representative with Brazil in active membership.

A spokesperson for the Brazilian Navy said: “On July 30th, the Brazilian Navy answered the invitation letter from the CCFM accepting the affiliation as a full member of the CMF. The Brazilian Navy considers this kind of event an excellent opportunity to reinforce ties of friendship, as well as to promote cooperation and mutual respect among the participating Navies.”

The addition of Brazil to the CMF coalition means that they now have representation on every inhabited continent and have become a global maritime task force.

Commodore Steve Dainton, Deputy Commander of CMF said: “I am delighted to welcome Brazil to our growing organization. This just goes to show that maritime security issues such as piracy and terrorist activity are a true global concern and we look forward to the Brazilian Navy contributing to our international partnership.”

Earlier this month the United Kingdom on 9 August handed over to Saudi Arabia command of Combined Maritime Forces Task Force 150 (CTF150) after conducting a change of command ceremony at CMF Headquarters in Bahrain.

Commodore Al-shahrani RSN, assumed command of CTF150 from Commodore Steve Moorhouse OBE RN. The ceremony was presided over by Vice Admiral Scott Stearney USN, Commander US Naval Forces Central Command, Commander US Fifth Fleet and Commander Combined Maritime Forces.

The assumption of command of CTF150 by Saudi Arabia is particularly notable as this will be first time any Gulf nation will have undertaken this role in CMF. In addition to this, the Royal Saudi Navy (RSN) will continue its present lead of CTF152.

In his address to guests from the 33 member countries off CMF, Vice Admiral Stearney said: “I have every faith and confidence that Commodore Al-shahrani and his team will be as successful in protecting this great region’s maritime traffic and international waterways as Commodore Moorhouse and his team have been”.

The principal mission of CTF150 is to deter terrorism, narcotics smuggling, charcoal and other illegal activity in the maritime environment across an area of almost 3.2 million square miles, encompassing the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman, Gulf of Aden, Somali Basin and Southern Red Sea. During the next four months the Saudi Arabian-led team will continue their work to counter terrorism and drug smugglers and reassure legitimate users of the high seas while ensuring the free flow of commerce across the area of operations.

During his tenure as CTF150, Commodore Moorhouse was successful in leading a multinational staff, comprising personnel from the United Kingdom, Canada, France and New Zealand. Under his command CTF 150 conducted four narcotics seizures, despite the monsoon season making maritime operations in the Indian Ocean extremely challenging. He also undertook several visits to countries such as Djibouti, the UAE and Kenya to further strengthen relations and improve information exchange.

On handing over command, Commodore Moorhouse said: “”The importance of CTF 150 remains as relevant today as when it was formed. The success of the current UK led iteration is the testament to the effect that nations working together can improve maritime security in this important region.”

On assuming command, Commodore Al-shahrani said “I have the honor to command CTF 150, which is the first time for my country, within this international maritime alliance to counter terrorism and to guarantee free flow of commerce”.