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US donates $1.7M worth of patrol boats to Guyana

March 22, 2014

GEORGETOWN, Guyana (AP) — The U.S. government has donated three go-fast patrol boats to help Guyana’s military battle gun smuggling, piracy and drug trafficking.

Brig. Gen. Mark Phillips said Saturday that the $1.7 million boats were donated as part of the Caribbean Basin Security Initiative. The U.S. program was launched in 2009 to combat drug trafficking and other transnational crimes.

He said the South American country’s military also has received high-tech radio communication systems and antennas.

Local fishermen have complained about limited police resources to fight piracy.

The boats can carry heavy machine guns and are expected to patrol as far as 25 miles (40 kilometers) offshore.

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