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INTERSESSIONAL MARITIME SECURITY AND PIRACY WORKING GROUP 1st session Agenda items 4 and 5 MSC/MSPWG 1/4 17 August 2011 ENGLISH ONLY

RECOMMENDATIONS TO GOVERNMENTS ON THE USE OF PRIVATELY CONTRACTED ARMED SECURITY PERSONNEL (PCASP)

Development of guidance on the use of privately contracted armed security personnel on board ships Submitted by Dominica
SUMMARY Executive summary: This document provides information on the Dominica procedures for the use of privately contracted armed security personnel on board Dominica flag ships when transiting waters known for piracy activity 6, 6.1, 8 6.1.1, 8.0.2 6.1.1.1, 8.0.2.1, 8.0.2.2 Paragraph 7 MSC/MSPWG 1/1; FAL 37/8/1 and FAL 37/8/4

Strategic direction: High-level action: Planned output: Action to be taken: Related documents: Introduction

1 As a result of the increased occurrences of piracy in the Gulf of Aden and off the Coast of Somalia, Dominica has had a number of requests from Dominica flag shipowners for permission to carry armed guards when transiting waters known for piracy activity. 2 While agreeing that use of armed personnel is not encouraged, it is recognized that the shipowners must take steps that are necessary, in their view, to protect their crews. 3 Dominica is actively responding to their requests to significantly enhance the security of their ships while transiting or operating in high-risk areas. This includes carriage of dedicated armed security personnel. 4 In this regard a number of detailed directives and marine safety circulars are used to establish basic requirements for such carriage. These are being finalized. A summary is given below.

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MSC/MSPWG 1/4 Page 2 5 The documents being developed include: .1 requirements and procedures for approval by the Dominica Maritime Administration (DMA) for shipowners to carry firearms in secure-safe storage aboard all vessels that may transit high-risk waters, and to transfer dedicated security guards to those vessels prior to entering in high-risk areas; requirements and procedures for approval by the DMA-recognized personnel to be employed as armed security guards including background checks and training in basic ship operation, basic shipboard safety, security procedures and use of arms; such personnel will be assessed and have DMA credentials that include a Marine Security Worker Identification Credential (MSIC) and an STCW credential for an ordinary seaman; and requirements for ships carrying armed security guards including control of any arms carried. Arms will be prescribed by DMA and stored in a prescribed, dedicated container that is controlled by a "two Key" system. Arms will remain on board ships that have approval for such carriage and the security personnel will come and go as needed by the navigation route. DMA sanctioned security personnel will not carry any arms when not on board a vessel.

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6 Additionally a bilateral agreement/MoU agreement document is being developed to facilitate port entry of Dominica ships carrying arms and to facilitate shore leave and joining Dominica ships for security purposes for Dominica sanctioned security personnel. FAL 37/8/4 (Brazil) is very informative as to how a Member State may view armed security personnel on board ships and suggests that a bilateral agreement/MoU will facilitate port calls for ships carrying armed security personnel and their associated arms. Action requested of the Group 7 The Group is invited to note the information provided.

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