Brazil promotes maritime security off the Atlantic coast of Africa

The Brazilian Navy (MB) is spearheading Operation Guinex-II in the Gulf of Guinea, Africa, from June 18 to August 20, with exercises at sea and in ports to increase maritime security and l interoperability with navies and coast guards in the region. Participating in the operation Cameroon, Cape Verde, Ivory Coast, Nigeria and São Tomé and Príncipe. Other navies operating in the region are ready to participate in the exercises, such as Benin, France, Portugal, Senegal, Spain, Togo, the United Kingdom and the United States, among others.

Guinex-II includes ship boarding and inspection, fast boat maneuvers, transit under asymmetric threats (such as speedboats and jet skis), and special operations techniques, among others. The objective, the MB said, is for the countries involved to exchange knowledge and techniques to enhance capacity building as well as maritime security tactics, techniques and procedures, while building mutual trust between the participating countries. . The Union of MB frigates and some 260 soldiers are taking part in the operation.

“During the entire crossing until entering the region, the teams on board the frigate Union followed various training courses, and received specific orientation through conferences and case studies, in order to be better prepared during of their time in the Gulf of Guinea,” said Navy Captain MB Flavio Leta Vieira, 2nd Escort Squadron Commander and Task Force Commander for Guinex-II. Dialogo.

Guinex-II brings together the navies and coastguards of Brazil, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, São Tomé and Príncipe, as well as other navies operating in the region. (Photo: Brazilian Navy)

Brazil has always had great cultural, as well as strategic, economic and political ties with the countries of the African coast, within the framework of the Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries, through the Peace and Cooperation Zone of the South Atlantic (ZOPACAS), a forum of African and South American Countries bordering the South Atlantic.

The United States was again invited to participate in the operation, bringing together the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard. Brazil and the United States have common interests in Africa’s maritime security and free trade. The Coast Guard’s involvement in operations like Guinex allows the United States to deepen its relationships with partners in the South Atlantic while sharing information on maritime security and governance in the region.

“[…] The Union of Frigates will receive officers from Portugal, Spain and the United Kingdom aboard the ship. It is a way to exchange experiences and cooperate between navies,” said Captain Leta, who added that the ship will alternate between sailing in the Gulf of Guinea region and docking in ports of countries. Guinex-II participants.

“In the South Atlantic, piracy has been concentrated in the African margin, in areas like the Gulf of Guinea, which is part of Brazil’s strategic environment. These actions require strong naval power and greater Brazilian participation and cooperation in this maritime region, through the enhancement of ZOPACAS as an instrument of foreign policy, to strengthen strategic deterrence,” the commander said.

This is the second version of Guinex; the first operation was carried out in 2021. According to Captain Leta, among the points raised at the end of Guinex-I was the need to meet more often with the participating countries. “In 2022, the preparation meetings provided a real environment for discussion which allowed detailed planning, as close as possible to what we will execute when we get there. This will allow us to have a much more fruitful exchange of experiences, because we already know what we are looking for in terms of knowledge,” concluded Captain Leta.

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