Barbados to host maritime security drill Tradewinds 2017

Barbados will be hosting this year’s edition of the multi-national maritime security and disaster response exercise Tradewinds which is starting June 6.

Some 2,500 participants from 18 nations are set to take part in the Caribbean drill.

This annual exercise includes executive-level leadership and provides an opportunity for participating nations to collaborate on challenges and ensure regional security.

Adm. Kurt W. Tidd, U.S. Southern Command commander, said the U.S. truly values the strong relationships forged during Tradewinds.

“The exercise helps ensure a seamless partnership, and, by cross training with service members from all over the globe, ensures a better response to natural disasters, and land and maritime threats, including illicit trafficking in the critical region,” Tidd said.

Two phases of the exercise will be conducted in the Caribbean. The first phase will take place in Barbados June 6-12, while the second one will be conducted in Trinidad and Tobago June 13-17.

Held annually sine 2013, Tradewinds is a joint, combined exercise, conducted in conjunction with partner nations to enhance the collective abilities of defense forces and constabularies to counter transnational organized crime and terrorism, and to conduct humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations.

Partner nations participating in the exercise include Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, Suriname, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago as well as military personnel from the United States, Canada, France, Mexico, and the United Kingdom.