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first_imgAround 100 countries send their heads of armed forces to UN Headquarters to discuss strengthening of UN peacekeeping. (Photo UN PhotoManuel Elias)Brigadier-General Prince C. Johnson III, the Armed Forces of Liberia’s (AFL) Deputy Chief of Staff (DCOS), has described the just-ended Chiefs of Defense Conference as a great learning experience for Liberia.The 2017 Chiefs of Defense Conference, which brought together heads of about 100 countries’ armed forces, and held under the theme, “Meeting the Challenges,” took place at the United Nations headquarters in New York from July 6–8, 2017.Brig/Gen. Johnson and AFL Chief of Operations – Headquarters, Colonel Daniel Holman, represented Liberia.The conference also included the participation of military representatives from the African Union (AU), the European Union (EU) and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) as well as the Force Commanders of the UN peacekeeping missions in Mali (MINUSMA), Central African Republic (MINUSCA), South Sudan (UNMISS) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO).According to a dispatch from Liberia’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations, the conference, among other things, discussed issues surrounding the rapid deployment of troops, training, soldiers’ conduct, discipline and the need to increase the number of female peacekeepers, which is placed at approximately six percent.Liberia is currently contributing a company strength of 75 peacekeepers, including eight female personnel, to MINUSMA following its service as a platoon under the African-led International Support Mission to Mali (AFISMA).“We went under AFISMA serving as a platoon with Nigeria and Togo in June 2013. AFISMA was transformed to MINUSMA; and as of February 2017, Liberia has company strength of 75 personnel operating independently,” DOS Johnson explained.Johnson said experiences shared by other contributors especially Uganda, who has an all-female platoon in the DRC, will help Liberia, who recently rejoined the peacekeeping efforts after nearly 60 years to strengthen its peacekeeping capacity.He added that on the margins of the conference, he used the time to negotiate on behalf of Liberia and secured a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the United Nations that details the number and types of military personnel as well as equipment and logistical services that will be provided by the country’s armed forces.The AFL Deputy Chief of Staff said that it is a standard procedure that every contributing country including Liberia funds the deployment and upkeep of its soldiers including the provision of major logistical support and services and gets reimbursed.“We are not alone. Based on the new regulations of the UN, some changes have been done. Other countries are also negotiating their MOU. The UN has two agreements – the ‘dry lease’ and ‘wet lease.’ Liberia’s deployment is under a ‘wet lease’ agreement where we go independent and take care of our troops and then the UN reimburses us,” Johnson explained.He added that when the MOU is completed, it will state how Liberia will be reimbursed for major equipment, maintenance, troop deployment and welfare.Meanwhile, Johnson disclosed that more AFL personnel are eager to serve peacekeeping missions in accordance with President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s quest “to give back”; but cannot do so now due to the terms of the negotiated MOU.“The motivation is high; the soldiers are eager; we are hopeful that after the signing of the MOU, we will be requesting an increment to a full company size of 150 peacekeepers. The military is about service, and the soldiers are ready to serve. It is just that our MOU gives us a set number,” he noted.Meanwhile, Liberia’s permanent representative to the UN, Amb. Lewis G. Brown, met with Brig/Gen. Johnson during a visit to Liberia’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations on Tuesday, July 11, 2017. On behalf of his colleagues, Johnson thanked Amb. Brown and staff for all the support during the MOU negotiation process.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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first_imgDonegal MEP Pat the Cope Gallagher has tabled amendments on boar fish and for whitefish vessels fishing off the North West Coast including under 15 metres.On 05 April next, the European Parliament will vote principally to extend the existing transitional technical measures under the Common Fisheries Policy to January 2013.The European Commission is anxious to roll over the Regulation. However, Pat the Cope Gallagher MEP is aiming to amend this important regulation  so as to introduce an appropriate mesh size for the fishery targeting boarfish and separately to enable whitefish vessels and small boats under 15 metres to fish stocks other than cod off the North West coast of Ireland.MEP Gallagher stated “EU Ministers for Fisheries agreed in December to grant Ireland 67% of the TAC for boar fish.“However, the existing rules under the Common Fisheries Policy do not recognise this type of fish, which is caught in nets with a mesh size in the range 32-54mm.“Therefore, I decided to use the Regulation on technical measures as a vehicle to introduce the appropriate mesh size. Thus avoiding the need introduce new legislation, which would take too long.”  “The European Parliament’s Fisheries Committee strongly supported my amendment in February and I am confident that the plenary will formally adopt. The 27 governments are also supportive.”“I have also submitted amendments to allow whitefish and small boats under 15 metres to fish off the North West coast in Area VIa. Regrettably, the other political groups in the Parliament failed to support the amendments at Committee”.“Area VIa is effectively closed for whitefish with a significant loss of income due  to unworkable technical measures introduced two years ago for cod recovery.These vessels do not catch cod however the rules under the Regulation make it virtually impossible to catch other species such as megrim, monkfish, haddock and hake.“I am very concerned for the financial viability of vessels involved if these measures are not amended without delay.” “In addition particularly for vessels under 15 metres, there is an important health and safety concern which needs to be addressed as quickly as possible. The current mesh size effectively means that fishermen must steam approximately 80km out from their ports into dangerous waters in order to make a living.”ENDSPAT THE COPE FIGHTS FOR NEW SPECIES QUOTAS FOR WHITE FISH VESSELS was last modified: March 29th, 2011 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:fishing rights DonegaklPat The Cope Gallagherwhite fishlast_img read more

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