Minister Sisulu signs Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Maritime Security Cooperation with Tanzania and Mozambique

07 February 2012

The President of Tanzania, Hon Jokaya Kikwete accompanied by his Vice President, Hon Mohamed Gharib Bilal, today witnessed the signing of trilateral Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) by Minister of Defence and National Service, Mr Hussein Ali Mwinyi, Mozambican Minister of National Defence Mr Felipe Nyusi, and South African Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Ms Lindiwe Sisulu on Maritime Security Cooperation to ensure security and the free flow of goods along the East Coast of Africa from Tanzania, Mozambique through to South Africa.

The trilateral agreement will see the three countries working together in securing territorial waters of each respective country. This includes the three parties sending members to participate in the combined maritime operations aimed at searching and interdicting bases of pirates and any other illegal activities in the territorial waters.

In his remarks at the signing of the MOU, President Kikwete extended his appreciation to President Jacob Zuma and his counterpart Armando Guebuza of Mozambique for working together in combating piracy in the Southern tip of Indian Ocean.

Speaking on behalf of the Presidents concerned President Kikwete said “we will do everything possible to support our forces in combating piracy effectively...we have to keep our seas safe”.

Delivering her speech at the signing ceremony Minister Sisulu said the three countries have “taken a lead in implementing the maritime strategy endorsed by Southern African Developing Community (SADC), we can keep our seas free from piracy”.

Today’s MOU gives right to the three forces to among other things, patrol, search, arrest, seize and undertake hot pursuit operations on any maritime crime suspect or piracy.

The South African frigate, SAS Mendi is currently deployed along Mozambican channel to combat piracy activities. The signing ceremony was attended by Chief of the South African Navy, Vice Admiral Mudimu, and the Tanzanian and Mozambican Military Command as well as delegations from respective countries.

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