NATION

Fiji, United States Of America Ties ‘Improve Maritime Security’

“Going forward, we are committed to further strengthening and expanding co-operation between our two navies. It is our hope that these talks will identify new areas for collaboration in order to help maintain security, stability and prosperity within the region,” he added.
02 May 2019 10:02
Fiji, United States Of America Ties ‘Improve Maritime Security’
From left; Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama, Republic of Fiji Military Forces Commander Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto, RFMF acting Chief of Staff Captain (Navy) John Fox hold discussions with the Commander of the United States Pacific Fleet based in Hawaii, Admiral John Aquilino (right, close to camera) and his team at the Marriot Momi Bay Resort on May 2, 2019. Photo: Mereleki Nai

Fiji and United States partnership can improve maritime security in many ways.

This was the statement made by the Commander of the United States Pacific Fleet based in Hawaii, Admiral John Aquilino, during a press conference at the Marriott Momi Bay, 33 kilometres from Nadi, yesterday.

Admiral Aquilino is in the country to familiarise himself with the role Fiji plays in the region in terms of security and maritime monitoring.

He held a series of bilateral meetings with Fijian Government officials, including Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama, and the Republic of the Fiji Military Forces, including RFMF Commander Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto and Chief of Navy Captain Humphrey Tawake.
Meeting boost relations

The meetings focused on how the United States and Fiji could work more closely on training, security and logistics.

Admiral Aquilino said that by partnering through the shiprider agreement between the two countries and joint military training, Fiji and the US could improve maritime security in many ways such as combating illegal drug trafficking to curbing unreported, unregulated, and illegal fishing.

“Fiji is an important partner in the South Pacific and it was important for me to come here to see the region first-hand, meet my counterparts – specifically Admiral Naupoto and Captain Tawake – and discuss areas for mutual co-operation,” he said.

“Our nations’ military-to-military relationship has expanded in the past few years and I am encouraged that the bond of friendship forged between our navies continues to grow stronger through leadership engagements like this, ship visits to Fiji like USS Stockdale in port Suva right now and our other senior leader discussions at ISS (International Seapower Symposium) and WPNS (Western Pacific Naval Symposium).

“Going forward, we are committed to further strengthening and expanding co-operation between our two navies. It is our hope that these talks will identify new areas for collaboration in order to help maintain security, stability and prosperity within the region,” he added.

Admiral Aquilino said he was honoured to spend time with the Prime Minister yesterday.

From left: Commander of the United States Pacific Fleet based in Hawaii Admiral John Aquilino, Republic of Fiji Military Forces Commander Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto and US Charge d’Affaires Michael Goldman in Fiji after their meeting at the Marriot Momi Bay Resort on May 2, 2019. Photo: Mereleki Nai

From left: Commander of the United States Pacific Fleet based in Hawaii Admiral John Aquilino, Republic of Fiji Military Forces Commander Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto and US Charge d’Affaires Michael Goldman in Fiji after their meeting at the Marriot Momi Bay Resort on May 2, 2019. Photo: Mereleki Nai

About Admiral Aquilino

The Commander US Pacific Fleet is a native to Huntington, New York. He graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1984, earning a Bachelor of Science in Physics.

He subsequently entered flight training and earned his wings in August 1986.

He assumed duties as commander US Pacific Fleet in May last year, becoming its 36th commander since the fleet’s Pearl Harbor headquarters was established in February 1941.

From left: Commander of the United States Pacific Fleet based in Hawaii Admiral John Aquilino with Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and Minister for  Defence, National Security and Foreign Affairs Inia Seruiratu. Photo: Mereleki Nai

From left: Commander of the United States Pacific Fleet based in Hawaii Admiral John Aquilino with Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and Minister for
Defence, National Security and Foreign Affairs Inia Seruiratu. Photo: Mereleki Nai

Edited by Epineri Vula

Feedbackmereleki.nai@fijisun.com.fj

Fiji Sun Instagram
Fiji Plus
Subscribe-to-Newspaper