The Senegalese navy, Senegalese interagency representatives, and a U.S. Coast Guard law enforcement detachment completed a combined U.S.-Senegal law enforcement operation as part of Africa Maritime Law Enforcement Partnership on April 15.
A combined boarding team embarked on the Senegalese naval vessel Kedougou conducted 12 boardings, of which 7 vessels were issued citations for violations of Senegalese law and were ordered to return to port.
“Working in support of our Senegalese partners throughout this AMLEP operation has been phenomenal. The operational successes speak to the professionalism and ability to enforce maritime security through interagency and intergovernmental coordination,” said Lt. Cmdr. Mike Ross, U.S. Coast Guard detachment officer in charge.
A total of 46 violations were issued based on the type of illegal activity taking place, to include fisheries, customs, and infractions of maritime law.
Maritime operations were conducted April 8-15 in Senegal’s territorial waters and economic exclusion zone within the framework of Senegalese maritime law.
Representatives from agencies customs, fisheries, immigration, port authority, High Authority on Maritime Safety and Security (HASSMAR), and police participated alongside the combined boarding team.
U.S. Coast Guard law enforcement officers were embedded in Senegal’s Combined Operations Center to assist in maritime domain awareness processes and interface with the Coast Guard crew
AMLEP is a U.S. Africa Command-sponsored theater security cooperation initiative facilitated by U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa/U.S. 6th Fleet which seeks to build capability and capacity to increase maritime safety and security, while enabling African maritime forces to effectively patrol their waters and combat illicit maritime activity.
AMLEP is companion to and nested within the international collaborative capacity-building initiative Africa Partnership Station (APS), also sponsored by AFRICOM and facilitated by CNE-CNA/C6F. APS, like AMLEP, seeks to build maritime security capacity in order to increase maritime safety and security.
Other AMLEP iterations in 2016 with Ghana and Cameroon respectively were held aboard the USNS Spearhead (T-EPF 1). The operation in Senegal marks the first time combined operations have been conducted from an African partner naval vessel.