One year ago, on March 15, we reported on the unlikely link between the tiny west African country of Gambia and Turkey which were establishing a logistical military assistance agreement. On April 3 this year, both countries decided to reinvigorate their military ties with the visit to the Port of Banjul of the Barbaros Turkish Maritime Task Group 2014.

The objectives of this year’s visit were to conduct operations in the oceans around Africa in line with Turkish foreign policy, conduct the first ever sail by Turkish Republic naval forces units through the Cape of Good Hope, improve current bilateral relations with African nations and to establish new ones, contribute to the safety of international sea lanes, support ongoing anti-piracy efforts, and conduct humanitarian assistance activities.

Speaking at a briefing on April 4, Navy Captain Ihsan Bakar, said the Turkish Navy was ready to exchange experience with their Gambian counterparts on maritime security and conduct bilateral trainings as well as participate in the “Vision 2020 of The Gambia”, outlined by President Jammeh. […]