Pakistan Navy takes over command of Multinational Combined Task Force  

Pakistan Navy takes over command of Multinational Combined Task Force  

ISLAMABAD: (APP) Pakistan Navy has assumed the Command of Multinational Combined Task Force 151 (CTF-151) from Republic of Korea (RoK) Navy at an impressive change of command ceremony held at the US Naval Central Command Headquarters in Bahrain.

This is the 8th time that Pakistan Navy has taken over the command of this important task force responsible for counter piracy operations off the coast of Somalia and Horn of Africa under the overall ambit of Combined Maritime Forces (CMF), a message received here from Washington on Saturday said.

Pakistan Navy assumed the charge on October 26. In the backdrop of a UN Security Council resolution, Pakistan Navy joined CTF-151 in 2009 to combat piracy.

Commodore Muhammad Shuaib SI (M) took over the Command from Rear Admiral Nam Dong Woo of the RoK Navy. Vice Admiral Kevin M Donegan, Commander US Naval Force Central Command and Commander Combined Maritime Forces, presided over the ceremony. A number of distinguished military and civilian dignitaries, ambassadors of Pakistan and Republic of Korea and senior officers from other navies forming the coalition were also present on the occasion.

Speaking on the occasion, Commodore Muhammad Shuaib said the world was passing through uncertain and unpredictable times, where diverse threats confronted the international navigation at the high seas. Piracy continued to present an intricate and extraordinary threat that impacted the freedom of navigation, trade, global security and stability.

He stressed that no single nation could resolve this menace, as piracy had been a common threat which could only be addressed through collaborative international efforts. He assured that his team was fully prepared to shoulder this critical responsibility as part of Pakistan's contribution towards the safety and security of the oceans.

Commodore Shuaib also lauded the outgoing R Adm Nam Dong Woo of ROK Navy and reaffirmed his resolve to continue operations with same zeal and professional commitment.

Pakistan has always been forthcoming and committed in the fight against terrorism and piracy in the face of heavy odds. As a responsible state, Pakistan is playing a pivotal role for maritime security and stability in the region. The near permanent presence of Pakistan Navy units in the Area of Responsibility (AOR) has greatly helped in shaping a secure environment for freedom of navigation in the region.