The U.S. Navy will for
the first time reward individuals for reporting information that leads to the
detection of illegal maritime activity or seizure of illicit cargo in waters
across the Middle East.
Reward a maximum $100,000 cash payout or
program, by the U.S. Naval Forces Central Command (NAVCENT), could potentially
reward a maximum $100,000 cash payout or non-monetary items, like boats,
vehicles, food or equipment, for tips that support counterterrorism operations
or leads U.S. naval forces to successfully seize illicit cargo, such as illegal
weapons or narcotics.
U.S. citizens are not eligible for rewards under
program represents another example of our commitment to this region and its
security,” said Vice Adm. Brad Cooper, commander of NAVCENT, U.S. 5th Fleet and
Combined Maritime Forces. “This also enhances our vigilance and supports
counterterrorism efforts, which are essential to safeguarding the free flow of
Last year, illicit cargo seizures in the Middle
East skyrocketed after U.S. and
multinational forces increased patrols in the Gulf of Oman and Arabian Sea.
U.S. 5th Fleet
warships seized nearly 9,000 illicit weapons, three times the amount seized in
2020. Additionally, the U.S.-led Combined Maritime Forces seized illegal drugs
worth $500 million in street value, a higher amount than the previous four
Area of operations
The U.S. 5th Fleet
area of operations encompasses about 2.5 million square miles of water area and
includes the Arabian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, Red Sea and parts of the Indian Ocean.
The region is comprised of 21 countries and includes three critical choke
points at the Strait of Hormuz, the Suez Canal and the Strait of Bab al-Mandeb
at the southern tip of Yemen.
In order to receive
the reward, tips need to meet specific criteria under the Department of Defense
Rewards Program. Tips can be reported by calling +973 3914-5845 or online by
going to https://dodrewardsprogram.net.