Exercise Saharan Express 2014, being held in waters off West Africa, is an at-sea maritime exercise designed to improve cooperation, tactical expertise and information sharing practices among participating nations in order to increase maritime safety and security in the region.
The week-long exercise will take place in two areas near the coasts of Cabo Verde and Senegal. There will be an in port preparatory phase and then the 11 participating ships will go to sea to test maritime security skills.
This exercise is one of four regional maritime exercises in Africa, an international security cooperation initiative facilitated by Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa. It’s aim is to strengthen global maritime partnerships through training and collaborative activities to improve maritime safety and security in Africa.
The aim of exercise Saharan Express is to develop participant nations’ capabilities to monitor and enforce their own territorial waters and exclusive economic zones. Should these participants meet in the future to conduct combined peacekeeping or humanitarian operations, or to counter trafficking in drugs, people, or weapons in the Atlantic Ocean, they will be better able to respond and work together.