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Kalonzo calls for military cross border cooperation

MOMBASA, Kenya, Apr 23 – Military organizations have been asked to cooperate across borders to provide swift response to threats and challenges that are likely to cause insecurity and instability in the world.

Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka said it was high time the international community worked together in the fight against insecurity for the sake of peace and development.

“The resurgence of piracy is one of the emerging security threats alongside terrorism which we must confront together,” said Mr Musyoka.

The Vice President who was closing the 2009 Land Forces Symposium at the Serena Beach Hotel in Mombasa on Thursday, noted that piracy was an international problem and Somali waters were currently the most dangerous.

“In your capacity as security advisers, you cannot afford to overlook these two issues which are rampant in the Horn of Africa and other parts of the world,” he said.

“It is a serious security issue with grave consequences for economic and political stability. I am therefore happy to note that this symposium has endeavoured to identify these security threats and more importantly, offered possible solutions,” the VP added.

He lauded the role played by the land forces in the promotion and maintenance of peace in a globalised environment, adding that this could not be over-emphasised.

“The security challenges confronting mankind today call for a re-configuration of security strategies in tandem with emerging threats.”

At the same time, Mr Musyoka disclosed that Kenya in collaboration with several countries in the region recently signed a protocol for an international code of conduct in Djibouti, aimed at eliminating piracy.

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He said the code was designed to facilitate the arrest, investigation and prosecution of persons who committed such heinous crimes on the high seas.

Mr Musyoka, who is also the Minister for Home Affairs said, “The adoption of this international instrument is a clear indication of the willingness of countries in the region to act in concert to ensure safe passage of ships within the international waters.”

The VP said there was need for military chiefs to collaborate and share intelligence if criminal activities had to be contained once and for all.

“I am sure that this gathering is therefore timely and critical to enhance relationships, increase cooperation and develop capabilities to counter the common threats that we face.”

“As senior land forces commanders, you have a significant role to play in advising the leadership of your respective countries on how best to sustain peace and security, and manage perception and resources for the common good of our people,” he added.

Also present, Minister of State for Defence, Yusuf Haji said it was vital for the militaries worldwide to work together to enable them tackle the common challenges within and without their borders.

“We in Kenya believe in world peace and it is with this reason that we have contributed our troops to participate in the United Nations and African Union peace-keeping operations,” he said.

The Minister added that the meeting would be used as an experience to tackle the challenges facing many countries in the world as far as security matters are concerned.

“I am sure this will foster global peace. Kenya has been an active participant in peace keeping missions across the globe,” said Mr Haji.

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