MANAMA, BAHRAIN –
Leaders from the U.S. Navy, U.S. Department of State, and U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony Dec. 8 at Naval Support Activity Bahrain for a new facility that will enable interagency partners to share information for countering drug trafficking in the Middle East region.
The facility will be operated by the Regional Narcotics Interagency Fusion Cell (RNIFC), a joint Department of Defense and law enforcement team established seven years ago and comprised of personnel from U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, Combined Maritime Forces (CMF), and law enforcement agency partners to support maritime and land drug interdiction operations.
“We work with our interagency partners in the region to reduce drug trafficking,” said Fred Paris, RNIFC’s law enforcement co-director. “Together this builds an effective capability to stem the flow of illicit trafficking in narcotics and weapons.”
RNIFC’s partnership with CMF, the world’s largest multinational naval partnership, has been essential to countering illegal drug shipments in the region. One of CMF’s three task forces conducted eight successful interdictions in the Indian Ocean last month, seizing 975 kilograms of heroin, 523 kilograms of methamphetamine and 4,244 kilograms of hashish with a combined value of $26 million.
The interagency fusion cell analyzes and disseminates military intelligence and law enforcement information to assist in locating illegal activity and other transnational threats emanating from illicit drug trades.