CAIRO, Dec. 13 (Xinhua) -- The Egyptian Navy has assumed the command of Combined Maritime Force 153 (CMF) active in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, the Egyptian armed forces said Tuesday.
Established in 2002 as a multinational security force, which Egypt joined in 2021, the CMF is tasked with combatting smuggling, terrorism and other illegal activities in the region, including the key waterways of the Suez Canal and Bab El Mandeb Strait, it said in a statement.
"Egypt would take the pivotal role of the CMF command to have close cooperation with the naval forces of the participating countries to improve the security in all the passages, enable ships to navigate safely through international waterways, and counter all types of organized crime that negatively impact global trade," it added.
Assuming command of the CMF promotes Egypt's regional role in protecting the key waterways for global trade, Samir Farag, an Egyptian military expert, told Xinhua. ■