US, Japanese, Indian Maritime Forces Conduct Exercise to Counter Mines

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Tokyo - (PanOrient News)The mine-clearing units of the U.S. Navy and Japan Maritime Self Defense Forces, together with the Indian Navy Explosive Ordinance Disposal units, conducted a mine countermeasure exercise on July 18 near Ominato in northern Japan.

The 2JA mine countermeasure exercise takes place annually and is designed to increase proficiencies in mine-related naval operations among regional allies and partners.

Rear Adm. Brad Cooper, commander of the Amphibious Force 7th Fleet, said that the exercise allowed the U.S. Navy to “flex our mine countermeasure muscles and improve interoperability” with Japanese and Indian teammates, U.S. Navy said.

Cooper added that “the mine countermeasure mission is hugely important to both military and civilian shipping from all nations in the Indo-Pacific region and keeping waterways clear of mine threats is fundamental to national security and the free flow of trade.”

In the exercise, units practiced mine countermeasure tactics such as using sonar mine-detecting equipment and dive operations. The exercise ended with the U.S. and Japanese forces working together to establish a safe route through simulated mines in an allocated exercise area.

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