Ghada Waly

Director-General/Executive Director


The First Red Sea Security and Development Training Course

  15 November 2021

Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, 

I am very pleased to address the first Red Sea Security and Development Training Course. Congratulations to the Cairo Center for Conflict Resolution, Peacekeeping and Peacebuilding on this valuable initiative. 

The UN Office on Drugs and Crime is a proud knowledge partner of the Aswan Forum for Sustainable Peace and Development, the outcomes of which have shaped this course.  

An estimated 10 percent of all global cargo shipped by sea passes through the Red Sea every year. Conflict in the region represents a major threat to world trade, and to the development of neighbouring countries. 

Political instability and poverty also create conditions for organized crime and terrorism to thrive.  

Components for improvised explosive devices are trafficked into Yemen through the Red Sea, while cyberattacks threaten the navigation systems of vessels and target oil pipelines.  

Each year, tens of thousands of migrants seek passage from East Africa to the Gulf, in search of jobs and a better life, placing their lives in the hands of human traffickers. 

To support states in the Gulf of Aden and the southern Red Sea in addressing maritime crime and its links to land-based criminal operations, UNODC is building national maritime law enforcement capacity and strengthening port security and governance.  

To improve information exchange between Djibouti, Eritrea, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen on criminal network activities and suspicious vessels, we are driving the development of a Red Sea Information Fusion Center. 

UNODC is also supporting work under the Somalia Sanctions regime to disrupt maritime trafficking activities of the terrorist group Al-Shabaab.  

We are committed to continue working with all of you for the security and development of the Red Sea region, including through initiatives such as this training course. 

wish you a successful training, and I hope this course will contribute to strengthening the humanitarian-development-peace nexus on and around the Red Sea. By improving cooperation and coordination against shared threatswe can better protect and empower people against organized crime, terrorism, and violence. 

Thank you.