On August 18, the United States Coast Guard Cutter Mohawk (WMEC 913) arrived at the Nigerian Naval Dockyard in Lagos for a scheduled port visit. During the visit, Mohawk officers will meet with Nigerian Navy leadership at the Western Navy Command Headquarters in Apapa, as well as host ship tours for Nigerian government and military officials. Following the port visit, Mohawk will conduct two days of at-sea engagements with the Nigerian Navy to promote maritime security cooperation.
Consul General Will Stevens welcomed the ship’s arrival, and noted, “the United States is committed to supporting the Nigerian Navy in its efforts to both secure its own territorial waters and those of the greater Gulf of Guinea. Cooperation and the ability to operate together in the maritime domain are necessary to enhance Nigeria’s capacity to counter piracy, oil bunkering, illegal fishing, and other sea-based illicit activities.”
Shortly after the ship’s arrival, Consul General Will Stevens and Commander Andrew Pate, Mohawk’s Commanding Officer, met with Rear Admiral Yakubu Wambai, the Flag Officer Commanding of Nigeria’s Western Naval Command, to discuss the United States and Nigeria’s shared commitment to a safe and secure Gulf of Guinea.
The United States and Nigeria have a proud maritime partnership of promoting peace, stability, and security in Africa. Nigeria is a participant in exercise Obangame Express, the largest multinational annual maritime security exercise in West Africa, and will host the next iteration in January of 2023. Obangame Express encourages countries to work together to address transnational maritime challenges.
The waters surrounding the African continent are crucial for Africa’s prosperity and access to global markets. The United States shares a common interest with African partners in ensuring security, safety, and freedom of navigation.