Intel sharing still a challenge

Some nations treating intel as a one way street.

Sharing of maritime security intel still a challenge: Royal Navy official

By Salma El Shaheed

The fight against piracy in the Gulf of Aden faces tough challenges because countries still refuse to share intelligence, a senior ranking British naval officer has said on Monday.

Commodore Keith Blount told the International Defense Exhibition and Conference (IDEX), in Abu Dhabi, that while counter-piracy operations had seen significant advancement, some countries were still withholding intelligence for political reasons – even when they were operating in the same areas as other states.

“The Russians, the Chinese, the Iranians, they are all conducting counter piracy in a perfectly effective way but the information flow between us is not as good as it could be because there are other factors preventing it from being the case,” he said during a panel session at this year’s IDEX conference.

But he said an increase in “quantity and quality” of data collected by modern technology may act as a double-edged sword.

“I think there are plenty of opportunities – probably more opportunities than threats… but I do worry a little simply about the availability of information,” he said.

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