Clarification meeting in Seychelles prior to start coding IORISby David Nattrass 13 December 2017
Before starting the coding of IORIS, clarification meetings were held in Seychelles on 23-24 November to discuss the possible amendments, taking into consideration the latest technical requirements of the regional stakeholders. Fruitful discussions were held with both regional and national bodies. The technical meeting was chaired by Ambassador Barry Faure, Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs.
Maritime security is at the top agenda of the western Indian Ocean countries. The recent incidents at sea (i.e. 6 pirates caught off Somalia) reminds the crucial importance of regional cooperation and inter-agency coordination to respond to any crime and/or accident at sea.
EU CRIMARIO enhances those efforts; with the contribution of IO countries, the project has defined a web-based platform called IORIS for sharing information and managing any incident at sea. IORIS is designed to be a pragmatic sustainable tool, owned and managed by the region.
IORIS will be used by the regional entities in charge of maritime security, at first the two regional centres covering the ESA-IO region (Eastern and Southern Africa-Indian Ocean) following decisions of the Ministerial meeting held in Djibouti on May 15, 2016: RMIFC based in Madagascar and RCOC based in Seychelles. National agencies will also benefit of the tool according to the regional access policy.
The web based platform will include features such as multiple collaboration areas (national/regional), real-time communications, incident management, file sharing, advanced mapping functions, training platform, security features, 24/7 support, phase II development 2018.
Before starting the coding, clarification meetings were held in Seychelles on 23-24 November to discuss the possible amendments, taking into consideration the latest technical requirements of the regional stakeholders.
Fruitful discussions were held with both regional and national bodies:
⇒ Regional: RCOC and RMIFC staff, the Anti-Piracy Unit of the IOC (Indian Ocean Commission);
⇒ National: maritime administrations from Kenya (navy, KMA) and Seychelles (DRDM, Coast Guard, Fishing Authority, Reflecs3).
About the two regional centres
Initiated by MASE (Maritime security programme, EU-funded), and implemented by IOC, two regional centres have been set up to promote maritime situational awareness of the coastal countries of ESA-IO (Eastern and Southern Africa and the Indian Ocean); they were confirmed by the Djibouti Declaration on Maritime Security and Safety signed on May 15, 2016 by the Ministers of the ESA-IO region. The RCOC (Regional Centre for Operational Coordination) is hosted by Seychelles and the RMIFC (Regional Maritime Information Fusion Centre) by Madagascar. The analysts of RMIFC are tasked with analysing suspicious navigation behaviour and then alerting RCOC and decision makers. The response at sea will be coordinated by RCOC; both centres will be staffed with seconded liaison officers from the ESA-IO countries.