Almost a month after a bilateral shiprider agreement was signed by Michael Goldman, Charge d’Affaires of the U.S. Embassy in Suva, and Fiji’s Minister of Defense Ratu Inoke Kubuabola, a Fijian navy shiprider flew with a Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point HC-130 Hercules aircrew over the Fijian Islands, Dec. 8, 2018.
The agreement, signed Nov. 12, 2018, allows Fijian officials to board United States’ assets and conduct law enforcement from them in Fiji’s territorial waters, and allows both nations to pursue common causes such as fisheries protection.
In a post 9/11 world, the United States’ main law enforcement mission has been national security to keep the public safe from nefarious activity. An integral part of this mission happens on the waters surrounding the U.S.
“This is a great success for the Shiprider program, and it comes on the heels of an operation last month in which U.S. and Canadian law enforcement exercised the very same cross-border interdiction capabilities and authorities as used for this case,” said Capt. Scott Lemasters, commander of Coast Guard Sector Detroit. “We couldn’t be more pleased with the result.”