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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
06KINGSTON1343
2006-07-07 20:23:00
UNCLASSIFIED
Embassy Kingston
Cable title:  

AMBASSADOR JOHNSON HANDS OVER KEYS TO REFURBISHED

Tags:   PREL  SNAR  JM 
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VZCZCXYZ0001
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHKG #1343 1882023
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 072023Z JUL 06
FM AMEMBASSY KINGSTON
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 3170
INFO RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA 1128
RUEHWN/AMEMBASSY BRIDGETOWN 7378
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 0429
RUEHBH/AMEMBASSY NASSAU 2500
RUEHPU/AMEMBASSY PORT AU PRINCE 2989
RUEHSP/AMEMBASSY PORT OF SPAIN 5108
RUEHDG/AMEMBASSY SANTO DOMINGO 5701
RUEOMFO/DIRJIATF SOUTH J2
RUCOWCV/CCGDSEVEN MIAMI FL
						UNCLAS KINGSTON 001343 

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR INL/LP (BOZZOLO),INL/RM/MS (HENDERSON) AND
WHA/CAR (BENT)

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL SNAR JM
SUBJECT: AMBASSADOR JOHNSON HANDS OVER KEYS TO REFURBISHED
SEA ARK VESSEL


UNCLAS KINGSTON 001343

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR INL/LP (BOZZOLO),INL/RM/MS (HENDERSON) AND
WHA/CAR (BENT)

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL SNAR JM
SUBJECT: AMBASSADOR JOHNSON HANDS OVER KEYS TO REFURBISHED
SEA ARK VESSEL



1. During a widely publicized ceremony at Jamaica's Coast
Guard base in Port Royal on July 6, U.S. Ambassador Brenda
Johnson formally presented the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF)
with the keys to a refurbished Sea Ark Dauntless Class vessel
recently refitted/refurbished using NAS/INL funds. JDF Chief
of Staff, Rear Admiral Hardley Lewin, received the keys from
the Ambassador. He, in turn, presented them to JDF/CG
Commander Sidney Innis.


2. In her remarks, Ambassador Johnson stated that this was
the first of two 40-foot Sea Ark vessels being refurbished by
the Narcotics Affairs Section (NAS) at a total cost of
$670,000. She expressed the expectation that, with the
addition of these two vessels, the JDF Coast Guard will gain
increased control over Jamaica's territorial waters. The
Ambassador also noted that, in the past two years, NAS
provided $133,000, which was used to help establish the CG
station in Black River, to refurbish a coastal interceptor,
to purchase spare parts and general equipment for the Coast
Guard, as well as to contribute to efforts of other USG
entities to establish a Coast Guard presence in Pedro Cays.


3. Admiral Lewin and Commander Innes praised the
long-standing and productive relationship between the Embassy
and JDF/CG. The Admiral (formerly the CG Commander) pointed
out that four Sea Arks were originally provided by the USG
many years ago and had proved to be the sturdy workhorses of
the CG fleet. At times, they were the only operable boats
available for CG operations. CG personnel had developed deep
respect for their capabilities. He said the refitted vessels
have many years of life ahead of them. He expressed the hope
that NAS would consider refurbishing the remaining two
vessels. At the conclusion of the ceremony, the boat was
blessed and the Ambassador climbed aboard for an inspection.



4. Comment: NAS support for the JDF/Coast Guard aims to
improve GOJ maritime interdiction capabilities. The Sea Arks
will be deployed to stations around the island in order to
improve the CG's response time capability. Currently there
are six stations. We will look into the possibility of
funding the refitting of a third vessel. But, we also need
to see whether the Coast Guard can adapt its resources to
changing methods used by drug traffickers. In conversations
following the ceremony the Ambassador learned that
construction at the Pedro Cays site has stopped due to what
appears to be an impasse between the contractor and SOUTHCOM.
The Ambassador is looking into the problem. End comment.
JOHNSON




JOHNSON