USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), JS Sazanami (DD 113), JS Samidare (DD 106), and USS Wayne E. Meyer (DDG 108) steam in formation during training in the East China Sea, March 9. (U.S. Navy/MC2 Sean M. Castellano)

EAST CHINA SEA - Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group and the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) concluded an at-sea bilateral exercise in the East China Sea, March 10.

The U.S. Navy and JMSDF operated together March 7-10 to increase proficiency in basic maritime skills and improve response capabilities.

“This exercise is in keeping with exercises we routinely conduct with our JMSDF counterparts in the Western Pacific Ocean and are designed to improve coordination, teamwork, operational proficiency and readiness,” said Rear Adm. Jim Kilby, commander, Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 1. “Our two navies working together demonstrate our combined resolve to ensure peace and stability for all our partners and allies in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region.”

Participating units included JS Sazanami (DD 113), JS Samidare (DD 106), USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), USS Wayne E. Meyer (DDG 108) and aircraft from Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 2.

The forces conducted communications drills, precision ship maneuvers, combined flight operations and liaison officer exchanges during the bilateral training exercise.

“Our goal is to continue to work together through maritime training with the JMSDF,” Kilby said. “Bilateral training events improve teamwork, readiness and the capability to respond quickly to various situations in the region, ranging from humanitarian aid and disaster response to maritime security activities.”

For more than 70 years the U.S. Navy has maintained a persistent naval presence in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. The region holds the majority of the world’s people and trade and the Japan-U.S. alliance is the bedrock of peace, security and prosperity in this region. Bilateral exercises like this is a decisive demonstration of the strength of the friendship between the U.S. and Japan.

CSG-1 departed San Diego for a regularly scheduled deployment to the Western Pacific, Jan. 5. Carl Vinson, CVW 2 and embarked Destroyer Squadron (CDS) 1 deployed with Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser Lake Champlain and Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers USS Michael Murphy (DDG 112) and Wayne E. Meyer.

CSG-1 deployed with approximately 7,500 Sailors and will focus on maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts. The strike group assets will conduct bilateral exercises in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region to include anti-submarine warfare, maneuvering drills, gunnery exercises, and visit, board, search, and seizure (VBSS) subject matter expert exchanges.