Peru-hosted UNITAS 2017 concludes

Ships and aircraft representing the 19 nations participating in UNITAS 2017 conduct a joint amphibious landing demonstration. Photo: US Navy

Armed forces from 19 nations concluded two weeks of multinational exercises and events at-sea and in port, in Loma, Peru.

The 58th iteration of the longest running multinational naval exercise closed on July 26.

Participating nations utilized 30 vessels, 28 aircraft as well as several submarines and amphibious vehicles to complete six live-fire exercises and 37 combined maritime events during UNITAS 2017.

Sailors and marines also participated in a community relations project assisting schools and a hospital a northern Peruvian area affected heavily by recent flooding.

The exercise was comprised of two phases, UNITAS Pacific and UNITAS Amphibious, both occurring concurrently with multinational partners.

UNITAS Pacific was designed to train each navy to conduct combined naval operations through the execution of littoral warfare, anti-piracy, maritime interdiction operations, countering transnational organized crime, anti-surface warfare, electronic warfare, communications exercises, and air and amphibious operations.

UNITAS Amphibious took place in the vicinity of Callao, Ancon and Salinas de Huacho, Peru, and was aimed at improving partner nations’ ability to plan combined amphibious operations, stability operations, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief missions in the region.

“I want to thank and congratulate all who have participated in UNITAS 2017 for the work you have done,” said Peruvian Rear Adm. Alberto Alcala, commander, Surface Force Peru. “To the young men and women involved in thank you for your professionalism and leadership, I hope this is an opportunity you will never forget.”

UNITAS, which means “unity”, began in 1960, making it the world’s longest-running annual multinational maritime exercise.

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