Middle East Naval Coalition Expands with Jordan as 12th Member

By U.S. Naval Forces Central Command Public Affairs | September 01, 2023

MANAMA, Bahrain --

U.S. Naval Forces Central Command (NAVCENT) welcomes the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan as the latest member of the International Maritime Security Construct, a multinational maritime coalition established in 2019 to deter attacks on commercial shipping in the Middle East. 

Jordan becomes the twelfth member of IMSC and its operational arm, Coalition Task Force Sentinel, which also welcomed the Seychelles last October. The NAVCENT-led IMSC is headquartered in Bahrain. 

“Jordan as a proud nation understands the importance of free flow of global commerce and freedom of navigation and is committed to continuing its important role in underpinning global maritime security in cooperation with our allies and partners,” said Commander of the Royal Jordanian Naval Force, Col. Hisham Khaleel Al-Jarrah, in a statement announcing the move. “From this standpoint and in order to effectively confront the multifarious challenges this region faces in the complex maritime environment of the 21st century, we are excited to join the IMSC team.”

He said Jordan has a proud naval tradition and that the RJNF, “is looking forward to adding our skills and professionalism to one of the most essential and effective multinational organization in the Middle East.”

“Joining IMSC is the latest of many multilateral engagements by Royal Jordanian Navy,” he said, “and it is a continuation of our commitment to the collective responsibility of Maritime Security in the Middle East. Together as a team with our partners in IMSC, we can ensure the inherent right of freedom of navigation to merchant masters and enhance our maritime domain awareness.”

“We’re very excited to have Jordan as part of IMSC,” said Vice Adm. Brad Cooper, commander of NAVCENT, U.S. 5th Fleet and Combined Maritime Forces. “Regional security and stability is an imperative and Jordan has long played a key role in that endeavor.  Their representation on the IMSC makes our team that much stronger.”

“I’m both thrilled and honored to welcome the Kingdom of Jordan to IMSC,” said United Kingdom Royal Navy Commodore Peter Laughton, commander of IMSC. “Jordan brings to the construct a long history of championing the international rules-based order, and will join a vibrant and dynamic multinational coalition, committed to freedom of navigation and the free flow of trade in the Middle East. With Jordan’s addition, IMSC will continue delivering its vital mission along with our other important regional and European partners.”  

IMSC was formed in July 2019 in response to increased threats to merchant mariners transiting international waters in the Middle East. CTF Sentinel was established four months later to deter state-sponsored malign activity and reassure the merchant shipping industry in the Bab al-Mandeb and Strait of Hormuz.

In addition to Jordan, IMSC’s member-nations include Albania, Bahrain, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Seychelles, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the United States. 

Jordan is also a member of Combined Maritime Forces, another major naval partnership based in the Middle East, and also led by Cooper.