Admiral Highlights SOUTHCOM’s Strengthened Partnerships

first_imgBy By Lisa Ferdinando, DoD News, Defense Media Activity March 13, 2018 U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) is strengthening interagency cooperation as well as partnerships in Latin America and the Caribbean to address evolving security threats, U.S. Navy Admiral Kurt W. Tidd, the commander of SOUTHCOM, said at the Pentagon on March 5th. “Drug traffickers, human smugglers, terrorist supporters, arms dealers and money launderers are not new to this region, but they operate in new and surprising ways, compared to years past,” Adm. Tidd told reporters in a press briefing. New approaches are needed in dealing with these threats, he said, as “relying solely on what worked in decades past to find and disrupt them is not enough.” The criminal and extremist elements are well-financed and are increasingly sophisticated and adaptive, he said. They are leveraging all means available to move “lethal narcotics, people, weapons and dirty money into and out of Latin America and the U.S. homeland,” he said. “Extremist networks like [the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria] reach deep into our hemisphere, inspire would-be terrorists to conduct attacks in the region or to attempt entry into the United States to do our citizens harm,” he said. Shared Principles Unite U.S., Latin America Adm. Tidd expressed concern about the influence of China, Russia, and Iran in the region, saying those three countries seek “footholds in our hemisphere,” but do not share the same values as the Western Hemisphere in regards to freedoms and democratic ideals. “Those freedoms and principles are what unite us,” he said, adding the United States is “watchful” for attempts to erode those shared principles, threaten U.S. interests or undermine U.S. partnerships within the region. “These shared concerns are driving our efforts to continue building a network of capable partners across the [U.S.] Defense Department, the federal government, the Western Hemisphere, and ultimately the international community,” the admiral said. Partnerships for Success SOUTHCOM is working with U.S. federal partners to identify ways to unify a response to the deadly opioid crisis in the United States, Adm. Tidd said. Further, SOUTHCOM has expanded collaboration with the U.S. Department of Treasury and U.S. Department of Homeland Security to increase intelligence sharing and analysis to better detect, disrupt and dismantle security threats. International partners are vital as well, he explained, in addressing threats and stopping illicit activities. “Last fiscal year, Joint Interagency Task Force South interdicted 283 metric tons of cocaine, thanks in large part to our partners in the region,” he said. “Without our partners’ support, 77 metric tons of cocaine would have reached the U.S. last year alone.” In addition, SOUTHCOM worked extensively with international partners to respond to natural disasters in 2017, he said. “After Hurricanes Irma and Maria caused levels of devastation not experienced in a generation, we worked side by side with Caribbean and European partners to evacuate and deliver aid to thousands of victims,” he said. SOUTHCOM’s area of responsibility in Central America, the Caribbean and South America encompasses 31 countries and 16 dependencies and areas of special sovereignty. Adm. Tidd highlighted how the command will continue to enhance its network of collaboration in the region. “The long-standing ties that we enjoy with those nations should never be taken for granted,” he said. “If we do not actively engage and work with these partners, others will.”last_img read more

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Stephen ‘not ready for Ireland’

first_imgStoke manager Mark Hughes does not feel the time is right for Stephen Ireland to return to international football. Hughes said: “He is doing very well, his fitness is improving. “He needed good quality work within the senior group. “Prior to coming here he was just working with the under-21 development squad. “That takes the edge off your work, the intensity of work is not what you need to make an impact at Premier League level. The more work he does with us the better he will become.” The midfielder has said he is willing to consider making himself available for Ireland again following the departure of Giovanni Trapattoni as manager. But the 27-year-old is still trying to establish himself at Stoke, where he is on a season-long loan, after falling out of favour at Aston Villa. Ireland has made just four appearances for the Potters, three off the bench, since joining the club last month and that has been his only senior football since January. On that basis, Hughes feels it is too soon to consider playing again for Ireland, whom he has not represented since 2007. It had been suggested he could return for this month’s World Cup qualifiers but interim national boss Noel King decided against calling him up, despite establishing contact. Hughes said: “Stephen is still trying to get back to the levels he knows he can reach and at the moment he is not quite there. “He is very close, but I think getting involved with the international squad would be a little bit premature for him at the moment. “But certainly he has said he is more than happy to have a conversation in regard to being involved again. “Probably the actual position of the national team manager needs to be resolved and then he can have that conversation and move it forward.” Ireland has not played for his country since he lied about the death of both of his grandmothers after pulling out of the squad for a European Championship qualifier in the Czech Republic six years ago. Press Associationlast_img read more

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India recall pacemen Umesh and Shami for Australia ODIs

first_imgMUMBAI, (Reuters) – India have recalled fast bowlers Mohammed Shami and Umesh Yadav for the first three one-day internationals against Australia while they continue to rest their frontline spinners.Yadav and Shami were part of the Test squad which blanked Sri Lanka 3-0 but were rested from the subsequent five-match ODI series, which the tourists also swept.Fast bowler Shardul Thakur, who played two matches in the series and took a single wicket, was dropped from the 16-man squad for the series against Australia.The hosts will, however, continue to be without off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin and left-arm tweaker Ravindra Jadeja for the first three of five matches against Steve Smith’s side.Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal will be India’s spinners as the Virat Kohli-led side continues to build toward the 50-over World Cup in 2019 in England and Wales.“The team for the three ODIs against Australia has been selected in line with the rotation policy of the Board and accordingly R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja have been rested,” India’s chief selector MSK Prasad said in a statement.“The team’s performance during the Sri Lanka tour was outstanding and players like Axar Patel and Yuzvendra Chahal, who performed very well, are being given an extended run and this will in turn supplement our approach, to build a strong reserve strength, as we prepare for forthcoming tours.”India and Australia will play five ODIs and three T20 matches during their limited-overs series, starting with the first 50-over clash in Chennai on Sept 17.Squad: Virat Kohli (captain), Rohit Sharma (vice captain), Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Manish Pandey, Kedar Jadhav, Ajinkya Rahane, MS Dhoni, Hardik Pandya, Axar Patel, Kuldeep Yadav, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Shami (Reporting by Sudipto Ganguly; editing by Nick Mulvenney)last_img read more

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