JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Commander of the United States Southern Command (US SOUTHCOM), Admiral Kurt W. Tidd, has pledged his organisation’s commitment to deepening ties with the Caribbean in tackling security threats.
  • The four-day conference, which got underway on January 26, is being hosted jointly by the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) and the US SOUTHCOM under the theme: ‘Strengthening Regional Capacity and Fostering Cooperation to Counter Regional Threats’.
  • US SOUTHCOM, located in Doral, Florida, is one of nine Unified Combatant Commands (CCMDs) in the United States Department of Defense.

Commander of the United States Southern Command (US SOUTHCOM), Admiral Kurt W. Tidd, has pledged his organisation’s commitment to deepening ties with the Caribbean in tackling security threats.

He was addressing defence and security chiefs from across the region at today’s (January 27) official opening ceremony for the 14th Caribbean Nations Security Conference (CANSEC) at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel in New Kingston.

Admiral Tidd said the US SOUTHCOM is dedicated to being an equal and trusted partner with the region in battling transnational crime, as well as making the cause of human rights a top priority.

“Our collaborative relationship with all of you will help drive this critical mission forward and ensure that progress continues,” he said.

The four-day conference, which got underway on January 26, is being hosted jointly by the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) and the US SOUTHCOM under the theme: ‘Strengthening Regional Capacity and Fostering Cooperation to Counter Regional Threats’.

It provides a forum for defence and security chiefs from across the region to hold discussions on mutual and common security concerns while sharing experiences and ideas.

“I am especially interested in hearing your ideas to improve our collaboration and integration of regional operations, exercises and training activities,” Admiral Tidd told the conference delegates.

He said he is also looking forward to hearing about the progress the countries have made in building a solid information-sharing architecture. “Let me know what obstacles remain, what still needs to be done and what SOUTHCOM can do to help,” he invited.

He noted that there are tremendous opportunities for improving information sharing among the countries and urged the leveraging of already established mechanisms like the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the Caribbean Basin Security Initiative.

Pointing to successes from the coordinated counter drug operations in the region, in collaboration with European stakeholders, Admiral Tidd said he is looking forward to “continuing that success together.”

US SOUTHCOM, located in Doral, Florida, is one of nine Unified Combatant Commands (CCMDs) in the United States Department of Defense.

It is responsible for providing contingency planning and operations in Central and South America and the Caribbean and is also responsible for ensuring the defence of the Panama Canal and the canal area.