NAVCENT Commander Participates In Manama Air Power Symposium

By U.S. Naval Forces Central Command Public Affairs | November 18, 2020

MANAMA, Bahrain (NNS) – Vice Adm. Samuel Paparo, commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, U.S. 5th Fleet and Combined Maritime Forces participated in the 3rd Manama Air Power Symposium (MAPS 2020) Nov. 17.

MAPS 2020 brought together defense officials, policy makers and industry leaders from more than 25 countries to provide a discussion platform for developments in military air power, specifically focused on air defense in high tempo, networked environments.

“The strategic environment is always evolving, and we must evolve with it to remain viable, relevant and effective,” said Paparo during pre-recorded remarks.

Originally scheduled to take place at the Bahrain International Air Show, MAPS 2020 was held virtually due to coronavirus (COVID-19).

The international conference fostered discussion of the most pressing issues in air power and missile defense in light of recent experiences and lessons learned in the region over the past year.

Paparo addressed the threat of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) and cruise missiles, describing the need to take a two-pronged approach in defending against them in the maritime domain.

“As the risk from cruise missile and UAS attacks grow, we must rely on kinetic capabilities to engage and non-kinetic effects to deny, degrade and disrupt the adversary’s ability to target any maritime vessel.”

He also emphasized the need for maintaining and enhancing strong regional partnerships in facing these threats.

“We must remain vigilant. In such a dynamic environment, threat conditions can shift rapidly, making the need for enduring partnership, cooperation and information sharing even more critical.”

Paparo closed with the assertion that defending against these specific air based threats is crucial factor in the larger combined effort to support regional security, especially in the maritime.

“We are committed to upholding the international rules based order, ensuring the free flow of commerce, the interoperability between navies, industry and joint partners, and maintaining those relationships.”