The framework for the Sulu Sea Patrol Initiative (SSPI) will be signed following a trilateral meeting between Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines in Jakarta this week.
The initiative comprises joint air patrols, coordinated naval patrols and exchange of military intelligence between the three countries to fight maritime crime and terrorism in the Sulu Sea.
It aims to emulate the success of the Malacca Strait Sea Patrol (MSSP), which has reduced piracy, robbery, kidnapping and smuggling in the busy waterway since 2004.
Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said a delegation led by the National Security Council (NSC) is in Jakarta to work on the “Framework on Trilateral Cooperative Arrangement between Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines” with their regional counterparts.
The delegation comprises representatives from the Defence Ministry, Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom), Wisma Putra (Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Malaysia) and the Armed Forces.
In a statement Thursday, Hishammuddin said that on the Malaysian side, NSC will lead SSPI operations while Esscom and Wisma Putra will manage policies.
The minister will also discuss SSPI with his Indonesian and Philippines counterparts, Gen (Rtd) Ryamizard Ryacudu and Maj-Gen (Rtd) Delfin Lorenzana, in another trilateral meeting in Kuala Lumpur on July 21.
He said that the Defence Ministers will discuss specifically on the operationalisation of the SSPI which will be undertaken by the Armed Forces of the three countries.
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