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Cablegate: Demarche Delivered, Sierra Leone: Global Maritime

VZCZCXRO8930
RR RUEHMA RUEHPA
DE RUEHFN #0258 1541440
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 021440Z JUN 08
FM AMEMBASSY FREETOWN
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 1942
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC//DHO-7//
INFO RUEHZK/ECOWAS COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS FREETOWN 000258

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR EEB/TRA/OTP (HAYWOOD0, PM/ISO (FREDERICK)
PLEASE PASS TO DOD/OSD (GRUBER)

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAID MARR MCAP PGOV SL
SUBJECT: DEMARCHE DELIVERED, SIERRA LEONE: GLOBAL MARITIME
PARTNERSHIP

REF: STATE 50488

1. (U) On 27 May 2008, the Defense Attache met with Brigadier
Nelson-Williams, Deputy Chief Defense Staff and Commander
Mansaray, Commander, Maritime Wing, Ministry of Defense to
discusss the Global Maritime Partnership Initiative. Relevant
talking points were provided. Both respresentatives stated
that they are extremely supportive of the initiative and
looked forward to Sierra Leone's participation.

------------
ACHIEVEMENTS
------------

2. (U) Since 2006, the Maritime Wing, Republic of Sierra
Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF), Ministry of Defense has greatly
benefited from United State maritime assistance. United
States maritime assistance has included the donation of three
Dauntless Class Coast Guard Cutters under the Excess Property
(EP) program; provisioning of an Automated Information System
(AIS) by the Naval Forces in Europe Coast Security Initiatve;
and mentoring and training on the Africa Partnership Ship
(APS). A number of Mobile Training Team (MTT) trainings
funded by the International Military and Education Training
(IMET) program have included Small Boat Operations, Boarding
Officer and Leadership and Management courses. The Coast
Guard Cutters and training have been put to good use
enhancing and improving Sierra Leone's ability to conduct
coastal security patrols and greater domain awareness.

3. (U) In 2008, IMET training courses will include Boarding
Officer Maritime Law Enforcement, Leadership and Management
Train-the-Trainer, Hull Maintenance, Small Outbaord Motor
Maintenace and Interdiction Operations Planning courses as
the Maritime Wing expands into counter narco-trafficking
enforcement. In 2008, the U.S. Embassy has seen the the
Maritime Wing move from an extremely incapable maritime wing
to one that has shown great ability at responding to several
cases of piracy on the high seas and to emergencies and
disasters. These include rescuing capsized fishing vessels
and citizens from a sinking ferry. The Ministry of Defense
states the country has already begun to see decreasing cases
of piracy on the open seas thanks to U.S. assistance.

---------
WAY AHEAD
---------

4. (U) In 2008 and 2009, the Maritime Wing, Republic of
Sierra Leone Armed Forces would like to continue their
participation in the Africa Partnership Station (APS)
especially in mentoring commanders and their junior officers
and executive officers on their duties. They would also like
to conduct joint training and exercises with the Maritime
Wing of Guinea and the Maritime Wing of Liberia once it is
established. Joint training and exercises would be focused on
improving joint interoperability, and set standards and
procedures for pursuing and interdicting illegal drug
runners. Other areas could include joint training in martime
law and maritime law enforcement.

PERRY

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