First District Jamaica Defence Force Coast Guard gets increased capacity to police territorial waters

The First District Jamaica Defence Force Coast Guard welcoming the arrival of the FCS 5009 Cutter, “HMJS Nanny of the Maroons” to its fleet.

The Ministry of National Security has acquired four additional offshore patrol vehicles and two maritime aircraft to aid in improving border security, reducing transnational crimes, and providing support to other small island developing states.

This was disclosed by Minister of National Security Dr Horace Chang, who noted that the capacity of the First District Jamaica Defence Force Coast Guard (1st Dist JDF CG) to patrol territorial waters and disrupt the drugs for guns and food for guns trade has been strengthened.

While maintaining that more of these vehicles are needed to enhance 24/7 monitoring of Jamaican coasts, the minister said, “with an increased capacity to police territorial waters, Jamaica will be in a better position to turn its attention more aggressively towards developing its blue economy, which is critical to economic resilience”.

Dr Chang said due to Jamaica’s geographic position which facilitates trade, logistics, maritime transport, and connectivity, the island is confronted by security risks that require bilateral and regional cooperation. 

He however, lauded the Caribbean Military Academy (CMA), and the inaugural research symposium for addressing these risks and for providing, “a timely, necessary, and welcomed response to the changing security landscape, even as we build a more secure, more resilient country and Caribbean region”.

The minister said the CMA, an academic arm of the JDF, provides training of the highest quality, taking into account cultural norms, contributing gold standards for military training in the Caribbean, while seeking to bring a greater level of strategic thinking into our security architecture”.

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Article: Published in the Gleaner on Thursday June 25, 2020