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05BANGKOK2048 Thailand: Coordination and Outreach on Maritime Security

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This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS BANGKOK 002048

 

SIPDIS

 

SENSITIVE

 

State for EAP/BCLTV and EB/TRA/OTP: DHaywood and CDiamond

 

E.O. 12958: N/A

TAGS: ASEC ECON ETRD EWWT KSTC TH

SUBJECT: Thailand: Coordination and Outreach on Maritime

Security

 

REF: SECSTATE 38877

 

— (U) THE FOLLOWING IS SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED, PLEASE

PROTECT ACCORDINGLY, NOT FOR INTERNET DISTRIBUTION —

 

¶1. (U) In response to reftel, various agencies at Post have

portfolio responsibility and/or interest in maritime

security. The Economic section has portfolio responsibility

for maritime security from an economic policy standpoint. The

Political section has responsibility for engaging and

coordinating with the Royal Thai Government (RTG) on a broad

range of non-proliferation policy initiatives related to

Maritime Security. These issues include the Proliferation

Security Initiative (PSI) which has a large maritime

component focused on ship boarding to stop WMD proliferation;

the Regional Maritime Security Initiative (RMSI) which

focuses on maritime security in south-east Asia, particularly

in the Straights of Malacca; and the Export and Border

Security Program (EXBS) which includes programs to develop

export control standards, technology and the legal framework

to stop exports of WMD related materials. Immigration and

Customs Enforcement (ICE) also has responsibility,

coordinating with TSA, and liaising with Team Thailand, an

RTG coordination mechanism comprising 12 stakeholders,

including the Maritime Department Port Authority, Thai

Customs, Thai National Security Council, Royal Thai Navy,

Thai Police, local government, and the private sector. DAO

has an interest in Thailand’s port security for ship visits,

and the Joint US Military Advisory Group Thailand

(JUSMAGTHAI) is charged by DOD with oversight of force

protection issues for DOD personnel in or transiting

Thailand, in coordination with the Force Protection

Detachment, a DOD entity located within RSO. Other agencies

which have interest are FCS, from a commercial facilitation

and trade advocacy standpoint, USTDA, which has funded

projects related to maritime security and US technology, and

FAS, as port security relates to FDA matters and its

responsibilities under the 2002 Bioterrorism Act. While the

broad issue of having Thailand support Regional Maritime

Security Initiative (RMSI) goals is referenced in the MPP,

maritime security coordination is not specifically addressed.

 

¶2. (SBU) Although there is no dedicated maritime security

coordination mechanism at Post, with agencies holding

coordination meetings on an ad hoc basis, agencies agree that

coordination within the Embassy, and with the RTG and private

sector, has been excellent. However, these agencies also

agree that coordination with USG agencies based in Washington

is sometimes problematic. Washington agencies have been

known to send port assessment teams one after another,

sometimes with little coordination with post, to do identical

assessments. After multiple USG assessments within a short

period, RTG contacts have complained about the added burden

these assessments present, contending this would be easily

remedied by better USG coordination and sharing of

information. Post agencies believe this has caused undue

strain on their relations with RTG contacts in the past, and

can be easily avoided by Washington agencies’ better

coordination amongst themselves, and with agencies at Post.

 

BOYCE

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Written by thaicables

August 28, 2011 at 5:45 am

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