CAPTAIN Matthew J Jerbi, Deputy Commodore of the Destroyer Squadron 7 yesterday underscored the importance of intelligence sharing with nations in the region in countering maritime security threats.
The senior US Navy official highlighted this during an interview after the launching of the 23rd Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) maritime exercise yesterday.
He explained, “We find that it is very important to be able to cooperate across different navies to share information in maintaining maritime security in the region, be it to counter smuggling, piracy or any criminal activities that are happening at sea.
“The more information that we can share, the more we can address the problems for the benefit of the region. Our role is to work with all nations in the region as well as to strengthen our ability to cooperate with them to coordinate our responses to minimise maritime security threats.
Captain Matthew J Jerbi, Deputy Commodore Destroyer Squadron 7 of the United States during his speech at the 23rd Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) maritime exercise. – JAMES KON
Speaking on the strong relationship with the Royal Brunei Armed Forces through the annual CARAT exercise, he said, “We have a very long and established history that started way back in the 19th Century when the US Navy first arrived in Brunei Darussalam during World War II; today the USS Salute lies on the seabed just off the coast of Brunei.
“Every year,” he added, “We not only increase cooperation bilaterally and multilaterally, Brunei has been a key player in numerous multilaterally exercises and we are looking forward to working with Brunei in the years to come.”
CARAT is just one part of a longstanding US-Brunei defence partnership which includes annual ship visits, staff talks, and Royal Brunei Navy participation in the US-led Southeast Asia Cooperation and Training (SEACAT) – a multilateral exercise involving navies and coastguards from 11 regional nations.