New presidential directive targets maritime security

New presidential directive targets maritime security

President Bush has signed a national security directive that calls for a plan to use existing capabilities to integrate maritime security intelligence on a global basis.

The president signed National Security Presidential Directive 41/Homeland Security Presidential Directive 13 late last month, according to a Port Security News report earlier today.

The directive said the government needs a way to integrate all intelligence on the location, identity and operational capabilities and intentions of potential threats to U.S. interests at sea.

The Maritime Security Policy does not outline extensive new initiatives to strengthen security at the nation's 350-plus seaports. Instead, it stresses integrating existing federal policies and programs, including the Container Security Initiative, Operation Safe Commerce and the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism.

A new senior steering group for maritime domain awareness will coordinate national efforts to develop enhanced capabilities to 'identify threats in the maritime domain as distant from our shores as possible.' Officials from the Defense and Homeland Security departments will lead the new group.

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