Continuing his busy engagement programme, Commander Combined Task Force 151 (CTF 151), Rear Admiral Daisuke Kajimoto, Japan Maritime Self Defence Force, has returned from a visit to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) where he met key members of the Royal Saudi Naval Force and Armed Forces in order to develop maritime security and counter-piracy coordination

Rear Admiral Kajimoto began his visit in Jeddah, meeting with the Commander of the Western Fleet, Rear Admiral Hamed Bakheet Al Johni.  Though counter-piracy was the main topic of discussion, the recent attack on a KSA flagged merchant tanker in the southern Red Sea focused attention on how CMF and regional partners can cooperate in order to reassure the maritime community.  Rear Admiral Kajimoto stated: “The primary mission of CMF is maritime security and, while CTF 151 is specifically tasked with counter-piracy operations, we take incidents such as this very seriously”.

20180412_CTF151_KLE_KSA2Rear Admiral Kijimoto with Vice Admiral Al Ghufaily, Commander Royal Saudi Naval Forces

The visit continued to Riyadh where Rear Admiral Kajimoto met with the Chief of General Staff, General Faiyad bin Hamed Al Rowaili and the Commander of the Royal Saudi Naval Forces, Vice Admiral Fahad bin Abdullah Al Ghufaily.  Rear Admiral Kajimoto concluded his time in KSA with an informative tour of the Royal Saudi Air Force Air Operations Centre, during which he received a detailed brief on the execution of Gulf Coalition air operations and the coordination between the naval and air forces.

It is now six weeks since the Japan-led CTF 151 took the reins from the Royal Bahrain Naval Force.  Although conditions for piracy have been favorable, only one, unsuccessful attack has occurred during this period due to continuous presence of CTF ships.  Rear Admiral Kajimoto returns to Bahrain to ensure this good work continues.