Cook Islands Prime Minister Mark Brown will be launching the inaugural Cook Islands National Security Policy and hosting a two-day regional workshop on National Security Strategies today.

“This document, our first National Security Policy, provides an integrated, overarching framework for our national security effort,” Prime Minister Brown said in a statement.

“I see it serving as a benchmark for those other Pacific nations who are considering a similar undertaking, in keeping with our long-held traditions of cooperation and knowledge sharing throughout the region.”

The regional workshop will be attended by more than two dozen high-level representatives and security experts from around the Pacific, in addition to the country’s national security director Maara Tetava Ariki, Pacific Islands Forum secretary general Henry Puna, local Cook Islands Cabinet Ministers, members of the Ui Ariki, New Zealand and Australian High Commissioners, and other participants from both home and abroad.

The Pacific nations to be represented at the workshop include New Zealand, Australia, Fiji, Kiribati, Tonga, Niue, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Marshall Islands, Palau, Tuvalu, Nauru and the United States.

Several major regional organisations will also be represented, including the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS), the Australia Pacific Security College, the Asia Pacific Centre for Security Studies, the Pacific Fusion Centre, and the Pacific Islands Chiefs of Police.

Director Tetava said the workshop will be looking at how to deliver “the best security solutions available to keep our countries and our region safe and secure”.

“Together we must collectively navigate the complex and evolving security challenges facing our peoples and our nations across the Pacific region.”

Tetava, who is also the country’s former police commissioner, acknowledged “the generous assistance of the Australia Pacific Security College, particularly Dr Henry Ivarature and his team” for their funding and logistical support in developing the National Security Policy and Regional Workshop.