PALAU - Since July, Military Sealift command’s Spearhead-class expeditionary fast transport USNS City of Bismarck (T-EPF 9) has supported Marines taking part in Koa Moana 21 in the Republic of Palau.
Koa Moana, which means “Ocean Warrior,” is designed to strengthen and enhance relationships between the United States and partner nations in the Indo-Pacific region, improve interoperability with local security establishments and serve as a humanitarian assistance survey team afloat in support of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command strategic and operational objectives.
“Joint exercises like KM21 are critical to growing and cultivating Pacific-region partnerships throughout the Seventh Fleet area of responsibility,” said Capt. Victor M. Martino, master of the USNS City of Bismarck.
“This region is a dynamic one and could require a joint and combined response at any time. Exercises like this help us understand the maritime environment, interagency and host nation capabilities and concerns and enable all of us to be better prepared partners should we be called on to work together.”
In addition to the civil service mariners aboard USNS City of Bismarck, approximately 200 U.S. Marines and Sailors from 1st Marine Division, 1st Marine Logistics Group, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, and I MEF Information Group and Coast Guardsmen from Coast Guard District 14 are taking part in Koa Moana 21.