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Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
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General Directorate of Border Guard
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Tuesday 23/04/2019  |  18/08/1440 H
With (69) participants from (18) countries Border Guard hosts high-level workshop on the implementation of the Jeddah Amendments to Djibouti Code of Conduct 2017 – “ Addressing Maritime security challenges through regional cooperation”

In the context of Saudi Arabia's support for regional efforts to enhance cooperation in maritime security led by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdul Aziz, and His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Crown Prince and Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense and upon the direction of HRH Prince Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Naif bin Abdulaziz Minister of Interior, Director General of the Border Guard  opened the high-level workshop on the implementation of the Jeddah Amendments to the Code of Conduct 2017 to address ,maritime security  challenges thorough regional cooperation . The workshop is hosted by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Border Guard in cooperation with the International Maritime Organization (IMO), at the conferences and seminars Hall at Mohammed Bin Naif Academy for Maritime Science and Security Studies in Jeddah.
While making opening remarks on behalf of the hosting State, the  Director General of Border Guard welcomed all the participants and wished them a pleasant stay in their second country, KSA and wished them a most success workshop.
Vice admiral Al-Balawi explained that the workshop is part of ongoing contribution by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in supporting regional and international efforts to building capacity to counter-piracy and other illicit activities, such as maritime terrorism, which threaten safety and security of navigation in the West Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden. 
Vice admiral Al-Balawi thanked the IMO,  and the secretary general of the organization for its  enduring support in promoting maritime security in the Western Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden, particularly through its support for the implementation of the Jeddah Amendment to DCoC.

He added that until around six years ago, piracy and armed robbery against ships were considered to be the most critical threats to international shipping in the region. Since then, a combination of actions by regional States, international organizations, international naval forces and self-protection measures by merchant shipping, succeeded in containing the threat. However despite the gains made, maritime security threats continued to evolve. That calls for concerted effort in addressing the threats.  
Al-Balawi pointed out that by adopting the Jeddah Amendment, 2017, the region sought a long term comprehensive solution that would also address those threats. The region was conscious that without security at sea, we cannot develop our maritime economies and  we must all be cognizant of need to address root causes of piracy and other maritime crimes, as guided by Jeddah Amendment.  If we just focus on addressing symptoms, the region will not get where it wants and needs to be adding that ( our visions of a well-developed maritime sector and blue economy, within the context of Sustainable Development Goals and the prevention of violent extremism, will not be realized). 

He also assured that through our shared values and commitments as articulated in the Jeddah Amendment, we can address the region’s maritime wealth and sea blindness. This calls for a common and full understanding and appreciation of what is in our maritime domain, in order to exploit its maximum sustainable economic potential.
Concluding his remarks, Vice Admiral Al-Balwi extended his gratitude to His Royal Highness the Minister of Interior, for the continuous support to enhance these efforts. He also thanked the IMO and HE the Secretary General Dr. Kitack Lim, observer States and international agencies attending this Workshop.  

On his part, Mr. Chris Trelawny ,the representative of the secretary general of IMO expressed his sincere appreciation to the government and people of the kingdom of Saudi Arabia for their kind hospitality and thanked HRH the Prince Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Naif bin Abdulaziz, Minister of Interior of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for unwavering support for the regional states. He also thanked the director general of the border guard for his personal commitment in championing maritime security in the region. 

He added that the theme of this high-level workshop is “Addressing maritime security challenges through regional cooperation.  Within this concept, the focus will be on enhancing the DCoC information sharing network to meet the requirements of the Jeddah Amendment, including the establishment of national maritime information sharing centers or joint maritime operations centers in all the participating States. He added that the workshop will take stock of where we are today and where we need to be in order to address the full range of maritime crimes referred to in the Jeddah Amendment with a view to enhancing regional and international efforts to build capacity to counter piracy and other illicit activities that threaten the safety and security of navigation in the western Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden.

He added that The Code of Conduct established a firm basis for national and regional action with respect to countering piracy and armed robbery against ships, including through establishment of national focal points, the facilitation of capacity building, and transnational coordination between the signatory States, other IMO Member States, United Nations entities and international partners.

In concluding his remarks, he noted that the exchange of ideas will make a positive contribution towards the objective we all share – to contribute to sustainable development and a thriving blue economy, enabled by good maritime security.

During the opening session, the Director General of Border Guard ,Vice Admiral Awwad Eid Al-Aradi Al-Balawi, was elected to be the chairman of the workshop.
The workshop shall last for three days with attendance of representatives from different international organizations such as UNDOC,IMO,EU CRIMARIO,OEF,CARDIFF UNIVERSITY, ICRC,INTERPOL,MASCHOA and the USA,UK and Denmark as observer states.