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SINGAPORE - The U.S. and Indonesian navies will come together for the 22nd Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) Indonesia bilateral exercise and exchange, Aug 2-8.
The exercise will take place on the ground in Surabaya and in the waters and airspace of the Java and Bali Seas.
“The United States and Indonesia share a common vision for maintaining a peaceful and prosperous environment at sea,” said Rear Admiral Brian Hurley, commander, Task Force 73. “Our shared interest in maritime security is what CARAT is all about – and it’s allowed our navies to develop a sustained and growing partnership that benefits both countries.”
More than 500 U.S. Sailors will participate in CARAT Indonesia alongside their counterparts from the Indonesian Navy, known as Tentera Nasional Indonesia - Angkatan Laut (TNI-AL). The exercise will feature complex at-sea training in surface and anti-submarine warfare, visit, board, search and seizure (VBSS) drills, mobile dive and salvage training, a gunnery exercise, maritime patrol operations, and exchanges between explosive ordnance disposal technicians.
Additionally, personnel from both nations will exchange best practices on naval tactics during a series of military seminars ashore. Numerous civic action projects, aviation seminars, sports exchanges, military law, and submarine warfare symposia are also planned during the shore phase of the exercise. The U.S. 7th Fleet band, Orient Express, will also conduct numerous cultural outreach engagements with the TNI-AL Eastern Fleet band for local citizens of Surabaya.
"We've planned a diverse exercise for 2016 and I'm looking forward to returning to sea with our partners in the TNI-AL," said Capt. H. B. Le, commodore, Destroyer Squadron 7. "CARAT Indonesia 2016 will strengthen our interoperability as we train together ashore and at sea in multiple warfare areas, ensuring we are ready to work together in times of crisis."
U.S. units participating in the exercise include the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Spruance (DDG 111), a Los Angeles Class submarine, the rescue and salvage ship USNS Salvor (T-ARS 52) with an embarked Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit (MDSU), the expeditionary fast transport ship USNS Millinocket (EPF-1), the expeditionary transfer dock USNS Montford Point (T-ESD-1), a P-8A Poseidon from Patrol Squadron (VP) 8, and civil engineers and technicians from Navy Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 5 and Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit (EODMU) 5.
Indonesia has been part of the CARAT exercise series since it began in 1995. After more than two decades of annual training events between the armed forces, CARAT Indonesia remains a model for cooperation that has evolved in complexity and enables both navies to refine operations and tactics in response to both traditional and non-traditional maritime security challenges.
CARAT Indonesia is part of a broader bilateral exercise series the U.S. Navy conducts with nine partner navies in South and Southeast Asia to address shared maritime security priorities, strengthen maritime partnerships and enhance interoperability among participating forces.
Commander, Task Force 73 conducts advanced planning, organize resources and directly support the execution of maritime exercises such as the bilateral CARAT series, the Naval Engagement Activity (NEA) with Vietnam, and the multi-lateral Southeast Asia Cooperation and Training (SEACAT) with Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand.