Manama, 29 September 2022 (TDI): Saudi Arabia’s Western naval fleet began operating for the first time with the International Maritime Security Construct (IMSC) in the Red Sea on 27 September 2022.

The International Maritime Security Construct

Framed in 2019, The International Maritime Security Construct is a consortium of countries whose aim is the maintenance of order and security in the Persian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, Gulf of Aden, and Southern Red Sea, particularly regarding maritime security of global oil supply routes.

The Royal Saudi Navy Western Fleet, concentrated in the Red Sea, is now contributing to IMSC missions near the Bab al-Mandeb Strait as HMS Al Jubail (828) conducts patrols in support.

The event signals an expanded partnership between the multinational coalition and Royal Saudi Naval Forces.

Notably, the Eastern Fleet of the Royal Saudi Navy Western fleet has been operating with IMSC since 2019, when Saudi Arabia joined the nine-member coalition.

Ben Aldous, United Kingdom Royal Navy Commodore, commander of IMSC and Coalition Task Force (CTF) Sentinel, and the operational arm of the maritime partnership said in a statement that “As the Western Fleet joins with IMSC, we are able to bring reassurance to our maritime industry partners as they transit the Bab al-Mandeb Strait into the Red Sea.”

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Following the establishment of the IMSC, CTF Sentinel was established four months deter state-sponsored malign activity and reassure the merchant shipping industry in the Strait of Hormuz and Bab al-Mandeb.

Moreover, IMSC, through the operational arm of Coalition Task Force SENTINEL, conducts overt security patrols of the waters of the Persian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, Gulf of Aden, and the Southern Red Sea.

Approximately 17,000 merchant ships transit through Bab al-Mandeb into the Red Sea annually.

Current Members of IMSC are Albania, Bahrain, Estonia, Lithuania, Romania, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America. It is headquartered in Bahrain with U.S. 5th Fleet.