Middle East

Dubai hosting counter piracy gathering

Dubai: The UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs, global ports operator DP World and Abu Dhabi Ports Company (ADPC) announce they are co-convening the third international counter-piracy conference in Dubai on 11-12 September.

More than 500 participants comprising foreign ministers, senior government officials, executives of global maritime-sector companies, and leading experts will convene for the two-day event entitled: Countering Maritime Piracy: Continued Efforts for Regional Capacity Building.

Building capacity in the region includes addressing piracy in the short term through effective security initiatives, including co-ordination between international navies and merchant vessels, and longer term initiatives that support the development of local economies.

The humanitarian impact of piracy on seafarers and their families continues to be a focus, and a highlight of this year’s conference will be a discussion with Captain Juwaid Saleem, a former captive of pirates in Somalia, and his family, who will share their experiences.  Captain Juwaid and his crew were held for more than two years and his two daughters featured in a documentary premiered at last year’s conference highlighting the humanitarian cost of piracy, when he was still a prisoner. He and seven of his crew were released six weeks after the 2012 conference; the remaining 15 crew members are still missing in Somalia.

Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs, said: “While the international community has made great strides in fighting piracy off the coast of Somalia, the UAE believes that maritime piracy, notably in the Gulf of Aden and the western Indian Ocean, remains of serious global concern. We are convinced that successfully countering piracy can only be achieved if the international community enhances its efforts to build capacity in the region. With that in mind, we have chosen ‘Countering Maritime Piracy: Continued Efforts for Regional Capacity Building’ as the theme for this year’s conference."

Dr Sultan Ahmad Al Jaber, chairman of ADPC, added: “Counter piracy remains a top priority for the emirate as maritime security is an important factor in the economic growth of the GCC region.”  [14/08/13]

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