In 2014, U.S. 7th Fleet ships, squadrons, operational units and senior leaders promoted regional stability and maritime security through more than 1,000 theater security cooperation engagements.
Engagements included major operational events, such as 160 bilateral and multilateral exercises, as well as 370 port visits and more than 500 senior leader exchanges, construction projects, military-to-military training and education seminars and community relations events.
Major exercises in 2014 included Keen Sword, Key Resolve, Ulchi Freedom Guardian, Malabar, Valiant Shield, and the Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) series.
These exercises are designed to address common maritime security priorities and concerns, enhance interoperability and communication, and develop relationships.
Exercises ranged from advanced, high-end operations in anti-surface, submarine and air warfare to basic seamanship and navigational training with up-and-coming Navies.
One of the highlights for this year’s exercise was JMSDF Escort Force 2 training as the sea combatant commander by coordinating the scheme of maneuver for the strike group surface combatants.
Of U.S. 7th Fleet’s 370 port visits, the U.S. 7th Fleet flagship USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19) highlighted this year’s port visit schedule in early August with an engagement in Qingdao, China, the first flagship visit to China in more than five years.
Press release, Image: US Navy