His Excellency the Governor, Martyn Roper, OBE announced at yesterday’s press briefing that a small military planning team would be deployed to the Cayman Islands next week. The team will provide planning and logistical support to the Cayman Islands during the COVID 19 crisis and as we enter hurricane season.
Twelve specialists will deploy in total in an advisory role including medical planners, logistics experts and security advisers. The team will be tasked with providing support in the coordination of essential medical supplies and personnel, to provide a liaison function with UK naval assets in the region, to work with Hazard Management Cayman Islands on Hurricane Preparedness and to provide advice on any security threats that might occur in these exceptional circumstances. It will also mentor our newly established Defence Regiment.
The Cayman team follows a similar deployment that was made to the Turks and Caicos Islands two weeks ago. The UK also has two naval ships including helicopters in the region - HMS Medway and RFA Argus who are tasked with supporting the Overseas Territories as we enter hurricane season. Last year RFA Mounts Bay undertook a hurricane crisis exercise landing equipment and personnel on Governor’s beach underlining what a major asset UK naval ships can be.
The Governor said: “Our law and order situation is stable and I have every confidence in our capacity and capability to manage risks going forward. But this situation is unprecedented and all my experience of crises underlines the importance of being prepared for any eventuality.
“This will be a small military/civilian planning and logistics team to support us on sensible scenario planning. It will provide expertise and resource to ensure we are planning and preparing effectively to manage any risks on law and order (curfew handling, prison, economic and social factors). It will be an extremely valuable resource to have just now in support of our security needs, Covid-19 risk and hurricane preparedness including coordinating other UK assets in the region.
“The team also comes with medical and security planners and logisticians who will be valuable to help ensure that Cayman’s stock of essential medical supplies remains robust. It is a strong signal of UK political support.”