The UAE adopts strict policies and measures to combat terrorist groups and organizations to fight terrorist acts that target the security of maritime navigation in the region, Khalifa Al Marar, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation said.
“It is necessary to emphasize the importance of the security of waterways in the Arabian Gulf and the Arabian Peninsula, especially in the Hormuz and Bab-el-Mandeb straits,” he said at the IISS Manama Dialogue which took place on 18-20 November 2022, Bahrain News Agency (BNA) reported.
“Promoting the security and safety of international maritime navigation in this region is a challenge and a priority for the countries of the region. Threats to the security and safety of these waterways were never just a possibility. It was rather a reality as witnessed by the series of incidents and attacks that occurred over a long period of time. The threat still exists at the time being please allow me to touch on three points,” he added.
The Strait of Hormuz is the only water away from the Arabian Gulf to the high seas to the Arabian Sea and then the Indian Ocean and it is the most important strategic strength in the world through which about 25% of the world’s oil consumption passes and about a third of the world’s consumption of LNG, he noted.
Bab-el-Mandeb strait is also of great international strategic importance for Europe since most of Europe’s trade with Asia passes through it in addition to all the maritime traffic to and from the Suez Canal that crosses to and from the Indian Ocean.
Considering developments in energy security at the international level the strategic importance of these two straits increases to a large extent. Equally important is the need to secure the safety and security of maritime navigation through them, he added.
“There are various sources of threat to the security of maritime navigation through the strait of Hormuz and Bab-el-Mandeb substrate starting with the act of maritime piracy threats by international organizations and groups and threats and hostilities resulting from escalation of potential and disputes between states miscalculation of the partisans, tensions that have to do with the security of the region,” Al Marar said.
“In addition to the hijacking of ships and multiple maritime accidents that targeted the military vessels operating in the Persian Gulf and in the Red Sea and the abandonment of straight, hostile actions by the terrorists Houthi militia, have posed and still pose a constant threat to the security of international maritime navigation using missiles drones will bobby-trapped ships and naval minds.”
The UAE has always worked to support security and safety for maritime navigation in and around the Straits of Hormuz and Bab el Mandeb, he said.
“When maritime piracy emerged, the UAE worked on supporting capacity building in Somalia and the Horn of Africa to confront piracy. It also hosted two international conferences in cooperation with the United Nations to mobilize support, provide financial commitments, and establish international alliances and coalitions to combat piracy in the region,” Al Marar said.
“The UAE adopts strict policies and measures to combat terrorist groups and organizations and to fight terrorist acts, including terrorist acts that target the security of maritime navigation in the region.”
“To face threats resulting from increased tension in the region, the UAE has adopted a policy of de-escalation. It has supported efforts to engage in a process of dialogue and research to guarantee the security and safety of maritime navigation with all regional and international actors that share an interest in maintaining the security and safety of chain supply chains and international energy through strategic waterways and the region.”
The UAE chooses to build bridges of communication with all countries in the region by engaging on the pace of peace, stability, and prosperity, by giving priority to diplomatic and pragmatic solutions instead of confrontation and conflict, Al Marar said.
“It provides a conducive environment and climate for cooperation of all parties, in order to secure the security and safety of maritime navigation in the region and to serve the interests of all countries regionally and internationally,” he concluded.