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Diplomacy in Action

International Response: Contact Group

Logo: Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia. State Dept Image

Description: Two French warships maneuver closely during replenishment while on anti-piracy patrol in the Gulf of Aden.  Photo courtesy of the French Navy
Two French warships maneuver closely during replenishment while on anti-piracy patrol in the Gulf of Aden.

The Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS) was created on January 14, 2009 pursuant to UN Security Council Resolution 1851. This voluntary, ad hoc international forum brings together countries, organizations, and industry groups with an interest in combating piracy. Participating states seek to coordinate political, military, and other efforts to bring an end to piracy off the coast of Somalia and to ensure that pirates are brought to justice.

Nearly 80 countries and several international organizations participate in the Contact Group, including the African Union, the Arab League, the European Union, the International Maritime Organization, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, and various departments and agencies of the United Nations.

The Contact Group's Working Groups are:

  • Working Group 1: Capacity Building, chaired by the United Kingdom, focuses on force generation, operational coordination and capacity-building;
  • Working Group 2: Legal Forum of the CGPCS, chaired by Portugal, focuses on judicial mechanisms for deterring piracy;
  • Working Group 3: Maritime Counter Piracy and Mitigation Operations, chaired by the United Arab Emirates, works closely with the commercial shipping industry to enhance awareness and improve capabilities;
  • Working Group 4: Disrupting Pirate Networks Ashore, chaired by Italy, focuses on the illicit financial flows associated with piracy in order to disrupt the pirate enterprise ashore.

Go to the Contact Group for Piracy Off the Coast of Somalia website by clicking here.

Point of Contact: Donna Hopkins, Coordinator, Counter Piracy and Maritime Security, Office of Plans and Initiatives, Bureau of Political-Military Affairs (PM/PI/CPMS), U.S. Department of State, 2025 E Street, N.W., Suite NW8090, Washington, DC 20006, (202) 453-9309,


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