Maritime Piracy in Arabian Sea Creating Strategic Challenge for Security of Global Trade

  • 5 June 2013

His Excellency Dr. Jamal Sanad Al-Suwaidi, Director General of the Emirates Center for Strategic Studies and Research (ECSSR), in the Welcoming Remarks to the international symposium entitled: ‘The Challenges of Piracy in the Gulf and the Arabian Sea’ held on Tuesday,  4 June 2013, at the ECSSR’s office complex, said that over the last decade, “incidents of maritime piracy in the Gulf of Aden and the Arabian Sea have reached high levels, creating a strategic challenge for the security of global trade and a threat to maritime activity in this important part of the world.”

His Excellency also observed: “The risks of such crimes taking place are exacerbated by links to organizations involved in international terrorism. Undoubtedly, the volume of global trade that passes through the Gulf of Aden and the Arabian Sea makes this region an indispensable economic artery and maritime corridor for world security and stability.”

Stressing the role of the United Arab Emirates in combating piracy, H.E. Dr. Jamal stated: “The UAE has shown a clear interest in tackling maritime piracy and has introduced over the past years several initiatives that have received regional and international response and have achieved positive results. In addition, the UAE has hosted several international conferences that have discussed the effects and spread of the phenomenon of piracy in this region and has examined ways to address it. These actions embody the UAE’s determination to be at the forefront of any effort or international action to confront maritime piracy and its refusal to succumb to any criminal blackmail.

His Excellency added: “In response to maritime piracy activities in the Gulf of Aden and the Arabian Sea, the UAE is following a two-track approach. On the one hand it provides support for international efforts to confront maritime piracy gangs and on the other hand it supports political ties aimed at enabling the Somali state to control its territory. The UAE is convinced that piracy is a result of instability and the absence of the rule of law, which creates an environment conducive to the spread of such criminal activity.”

H.E. Dr. Al-Suwaidi emphasized that, “despite declining rates of maritime piracy in recent times in the Gulf of Aden and the Arabian Sea, it is still necessary to maintain international efforts to combat and stamp out piracy in the region. Therefore, development plans for Somalia to address poverty, unemployment and the provision of a decent livelihood for its people, would be the longer-term guarantee against the phenomenon of piracy that threatens security and stability.