USA and Cyprus Co-Hosted a Proliferation Security Initiative Workshop
The United States and the Republic of Cyprus co-hosted a successful two-day Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI) workshop on May 6 and 7 in Nicosia.
According to a press release, participants included France, Greece, Israel, Italy, Malta, Portugal, and the United Kingdom. The workshop culminated from a cooperative agreement between U.S. U/S Rose Gottemoeller and Republic of Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades to co-host a PSI event in Nicosia.
The workshop featured a facilitated, interdiction scenario-based table top exercise that focused on participating States’ courses of action for inspecting, identifying, and seizing shipments of proliferation concern, perspectives on evolving regional proliferation trends, and establishing future regionally-focused activities to increase coordination to prevent weapons of mass destruction (WMD) proliferation.
U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Cyprus John Koenig and Ambassador Alexandros Zenon, Republic of Cyprus Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, co-presented the keynote address. Ambassador Koenig stressed that PSI promotes regional information sharing and cooperation as a means of enhancing security which is a common policy concern. Ambassador Zenon emphasized that PSI regional cooperation is more of an imperative than ever to respond to future WMD proliferation threats.
Launched in Krakow, Poland, in 2003, PSI participants commit to undertake measures, on a voluntary basis and consistent with their authorities and resources, to interdict transfers of WMD- and missile-related items, exchange relevant information, and strengthen legal authorities to conduct interdictions. They also conduct exercises, workshops, and other activities to improve their capacities to fulfill their PSI commitments.