Coast Guard, Navy continue efforts to enhance regional security, stop illegal fishing in Oceania

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File – Members of the U.S. Coast Guard Law Enforcement Detachment 104 and sailors assigned to independence-variant littoral combat ship USS Charleston (LCS 18) ride in a rigid-hull inflatable boat, April 26, 2021. (U.S. Navy photo/Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Adam Butler

HONOLULU (KHON2) — The U.S. Coast Guard and U.S. Navy are continuing to reduce and eliminate illegal, unregulated, unreported fishing, combat transnational crimes and enhance regional security under the Oceania Maritime Security Initiative (OMSI) in the central and western Pacific Ocean.

OMSI is a program that uses Department of Defense assets that are patrolling the region to support stability and partnerships in the area.

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The USS Charleston is conducting maritime law enforcement operations with an embarked Coast Guard law enforcement detachment from the Pacific Tactical Law Enforcement Team to enforce international law, according to the Coast Guard.

The operations protect United States’ and Pacific Ocean island nations’ sovereignty and resource security.

“The Charleston team is excited to work alongside the U.S. Coast Guard in conducting the OMSI mission. The embarked U.S. Coast Guard law enforcement detachment is a force multiplier and one of the greatest assets we have in countering illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing in the Indo-Pacific and strengthening regional partnerships.”

Cmdr. Joseph Burgon, USS Charleston’s commanding officer

Officials say the OMSI program increases maritime domain awareness and security by allowing Coast Guard law enforcement personnel to conduct maritime law enforcement operations from Navy assets.

“LEDET 104 is incredibly proud to play a part in the fight against Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) fishing activities in the Western and Central Pacific region. Our team of highly trained Law Enforcement professionals are ready to respond to this growing threat against our global resources with our maritime partners.”

Lt. Carlos Martinez, LEDET Officer in Charge

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