Govt Committed to Strengthening of Regional Security

Photo: Mark Bell Minister of National Security, Hon. Peter Bunting (third left), having a light discussion with (from left): Commander in the United States South Command (US SOUTHCOM), Admiral Kurt W. Tidd; United States Ambassador to Jamaica, His Excellency Luis Moreno; and Chief of Defence Staff, Major General Antony Anderson; ahead of the official opening of the 14th Caribbean Nations Security Conference (CANSEC), at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel on January 27. CANSEC is being hosted in Jamaica until January 29 by the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) and the US SOUTHCOM, to facilitate discussion on strengthening regional security mechanisms.

Story Highlights

  • Minister of National Security, Hon. Peter Bunting, says the Government and people of Jamaica are committed to strengthening regional and international security in the fight against a wide range of security threats and challenges.
  • Mr. Bunting said the Government has long appreciated the benefits of a collaborative approach to treating with the shared challenges...
  • The Minister expressed thanks to the JDF and the US SOUTHCOM for facilitating the staging of the event.

Minister of National Security, Hon. Peter Bunting, says the Government and people of Jamaica are committed to strengthening regional and international security in the fight against a wide range of security threats and challenges.

“As a country, we take regional and international security very seriously and have been taking the necessary actions to contribute meaningfully to this effort,” Mr. Bunting said.

He was speaking at the official opening of the 14th Caribbean Nations Security Conference (CANSEC), being jointly hosted by the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) and the United States Southern Command (US SOUTHCOM), today (January 27), at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel. The conference will end on January 29.

Mr. Bunting said he is expecting robust solutions-oriented discussions on emerging regional threats, regional efforts to counter illicit trafficking and the building and integrating of regional capabilities, among other topics, at the meeting.

The conference,  being held this year under the theme: ‘Strengthening Regional Capacity and Fostering Cooperation to Counter Regional Threats’, is an annual forum for defence and security chiefs from across the region to hold collective discussions on mutual and common security concerns, by sharing experiences, ideas and enhancing operational synergies through strengthened ties and increased understanding.

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Minister of National Security, Hon. Peter Bunting (centre, front row), with senior national, regional and international defence officials, following the opening ceremony for the 14th staging of the Caribbean Nations Security Conference (CANSEC), at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel on Wednesday, January 27. Also pictured are: Chief of Defence Staff, Major General Antony Anderson (fourth left, front row); United States Ambassador to Jamaica, His Excellency, Luis Moreno (fourth right); and Commander of the United States Southern Command (US SOUTHCOM), Admiral Kurt W. Tidd (third right). CANSEC is being hosted in Jamaica from Januray 26 to January 29 by the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) and the US SOUTHCOM, to facilitate discussion on collaboratively strengthening regional security mechanisms.

The forum involves the participation by senior defence and national security officials and representatives from throughout the Caribbean, as well as from countries outside the region.

Mr. Bunting said the Government has long appreciated the benefits of a collaborative approach to treating with the shared challenges, and that its support of initiatives to strengthen regional and international security is complemented by a robust national security programme, including legislation that facilitates greater security cooperation.

He cited the recent passing of the Maritime Drug-Trafficking (Suppression) Act, which plugs a loophole that had been exploited by transnational criminal organisations.

“The criminal enterprises that seek to exploit our size, our vulnerable shorelines and our resource challenges, will not succeed if we intensify our collaboration and take an integrated approach to our security,” the Minister said.

He argued that the strong participation and contribution of international and regional security officials at CANSEC demonstrate that the region is united to fight against criminality and lawlessness.

The Minister expressed thanks to the JDF and the US SOUTHCOM for facilitating the staging of the event.

Meanwhile, Chief of Defence Staff, Major General Antony Anderson, welcomed the participants and said the JDF is looking forward to leveraging the vast amount of experience, knowledge and human capacity gathered at the forum.

“We will apply ourselves to finding solutions to the existing and emerging threats that face us, by strengthening our regional capacity and fostering cooperation,” he said.

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