The George Washington Carrier Strike Group (GWCSG) departed Hong Kong, June 20, after a four-day, goodwill port visit.
The primary purpose of GWCSG’s visit to the city, affectionately nicknamed “Pearl of the Orient”, was to enhance the U.S. Navy’s interoperability and theater security cooperation efforts with the Chinese People’s Liberation Army and Navy, and Hong Kong officials through several engagements.
“We work two different partnerships when we come [to Hong Kong], one is the People’s Liberation Army and Navy relationship and that has to do with mostly bilateral meetings as well as exposure to some of our naval operations,” said Rear Adm. Mark Montgomery, commander, Battle Force 7th Fleet. “The second is work with Hong Kong officials, and in that case, we worked with their explosive ordnance disposal team to share best practices and lessons learned. We were able to discuss our commitment to our relations between our militaries and our desire for increased bilateral cooperation.”
The GWCSG includes USS George Washington (CVN 73) and its embarked air wing, Carrier Air Wing 5, Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruisers USS Antietam (CG 54) and USS Shiloh (CG 67), and the Arleigh-Burke class guided-missile destroyers USS John S. McCain (DDG 56) and USS Kidd (DDG 100). Together they provide a combat-ready force that protects and defends the collective maritime interest of the U.S. and its allies and partners in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region.
Press Release, June 25, 2014; Image: Wikimedia