The Lessons Learned Project is delighted to announce the publication of the communiqué from the 17th plenary session of the CGPCS, held in Dubai on 28th October 2014. Together with the Working Group sessions and the 4th UAE Counter-piracy Conference, the plenary session formed the 2014 UAE Counter-piracy Week hosted by the Government of the United Arab Emirates. The communiqué notes the Contact Group’s welcome of the United Nations Secretary General’s report (S/2014/740) that highlighted the importance of continued deterrence and international naval presence in combating piracy. The CGPCS also welcomed the release of eleven seafarers belonging to the hijacked vessel M/V Albedo.
While the CGPCS congratulated the Somali authorities for the resumption of the Somali Coast Guard’s international duty station at the entrance of Mogadishu Sea Port and for the success of 61 Somali cadets from Coast Guard and Port Police that recently graduated from their seven week training course, the CGPCS expressed concern and regret at the release, by the Federal Government of Somalia, of Mohammed Garfanje, a known pirate leader and kingpin. Acknowledging that, despite the irrefutable success of international efforts, piracy networks are still in intact, the CGPCS called upon the Federal and Regional Governments in Somalia to arrest, prosecute or extradite pirate leaders operating in and from their territory. Further, the CGPCS also called upon all States, both in the region and globally, to arrest and bring to justice pirate leaders, negotiators, middlemen and financiers.
Prior to the plenary, the Working Group on Capacity Building agreed, in principle, to a draft paper on priorities for counter piracy capacity building to end of 2016 and to the proposal of EUCAP Nestor to rebrand the Capacity Building Coordination Group (CBCG) as the ‘technical group on Capacity Building’ with a revised high level strategic role to monitor work priorities for 2016. Finally the communiqué records the request from the CGPCS chair for stakeholders to consider forwarding the candidacy to chair the CGPCS in 2015 and the CGPCS’s agreement that in 2015 one Plenary Session will be held in the region. The full communique is available here: Communique of CGPCS’s 17th Plenary