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To boost regional security US marine general visits T&T
United States marine corps general John Kelly, commander of US southern command, who visited Port-of-Spain yesterday, said he was delighted to have met with the Government and defence leaders on his Caribbean visit. Kelly met with prime minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar, national security Minister Jack Warner, foreign affairs minister Winston Dookeran and members of the T&T Defence Force led by chief of defence staff, Maj Gen Kenrick Maharaj.
Summing up the visit, Kelly said: “Our discussions on various topics, chief among them regional security challenges, shared goals, and the important partnership between our countries were very good.” Kelly noted that both the United States and T&T have very close ties and felt honoured to have had the US Navy ship, USS Underwood, join in celebrating the 50th anniversary of T&T’s independence last year.
“Security challenges have also changed and today we need to confront or counter threats ranging from stateless actors engaged in illicit trafficking of drugs, arms, money and people, to natural disasters,” he said. The general stressed that such threats were not confined by territorial boundaries but were also regional, and therefore required a regional approach of which SouthCom is an integral part.
The visitors vowed that SouthCom “will continue working with equal and trusted partners, like Trinidad and Tobago, to strengthen regional co-operation, improve key capabilities and develop effective strategies that support our security goals.”
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