Sierra Leone Telegraph: 02 August 2022:
The USCGC Mohawk arrived in Freetown last weekend for a scheduled port call. During the visit, Mohawk received on board Sierra Leone government officials, including Vice President Juldeh Jalloh and military leaders.
US Navy officers will hold discussions with fishing communities on the impact of illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing, including a screening of a film by award-winning Sierra Leonean journalist Lansana Mansaray.
“The United States Embassy is proud to host USCGC Mohawk in Freetown this week,” said United States Ambassador David Reimer. “Supporting our maritime security partners is a vital policy priority for the United States. Maritime security cooperation not only ensures safer and more secure oceans, but also contributes to safeguarding Sierra Leone’s endangered marine biospheres, necessary for food security and environmental protection for future generations. .
“My crew and I are thrilled to be in Freetown,” said Cmdr. Andrew Pate, commanding officer of the Mohawk. “One of our primary objectives during this deployment is to enhance the ability of partner nations to operate effectively in the maritime domain and to promote targeted, effective and intelligence-driven law enforcement operations.”
Following the port of call, Mohawk will embark on a joint mission with officers from the Joint Operations Center (JOC) of the Joint Maritime Committee (JMC) Sierra Leone and the Ministry of Fisheries to protect Sierra Leonean waters.
The United States and Sierra Leone have a proud history of working together to promote peace, stability, and security in Africa.
In March, Sierra Leone participated in Exercise Obangame Express 2022, the largest annual maritime security exercise in West Africa. These types of exercises strengthen partnerships and allow nations to work more closely on transnational maritime challenges, including narcotics trafficking.
The United States shares a common interest with African partner nations in ensuring safety, security, and freedom of navigation in the waters surrounding the continent. These waters are essential for Africa’s prosperity and its access to global markets.