Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Vella Gulf (CG 72) departed the Black Sea, July 14, after completing a round of engagements designed to strengthen ties with partners and allies in the Black Sea region.
While in the Black Sea, Vella Gulf conducted a port visit in Bulgaria to prepare for her participation in the Bulgarian-led exercise Breeze 2014. Breeze consisted of a wide variety of drills across the full spectrum of operations including air defense, surface warfare and anti-submarine warfare as well as navigation of a simulated mine swept channel and naval gunnery exercises.
The presence of the Norfolk based ship in the Black Sea, represented efforts by the United States to reaffirm our commitment to strengthening ties with NATO allies and partners, while working toward mutual goals of promoting peace, security and stability in the region.
U.S. 6th Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied, joint and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.
Press Release, July 15, 2014; Image: US Navy