Sri Lanka hosts its first CARAT exercise ever

US Marines and Sri Lankan Marines conduct visit, board, search, and seizure (VBSS) drills during CARAT. Photo: US Navy

Sri Lankan maritime forces welcomed their US counterparts to Trincomalee, Sri Lanka, on October 1, where the two services will work together as part of the exercise Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT).

This is the first ever CARAT exercise hosted by Sri Lanka.

CARAT Sri Lanka 2017 is part of a series of bilateral CARAT military exercises between the U.S. Navy and the armed forces of Bangladesh, Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, the Philippines and Thailand. The focus of CARAT is developing maritime security capabilities and increasing interoperability among participants. Skill areas exercised during the CARAT include small boat operations, evidence collection, diving procedures and anti-terrorism security.

“The U.S. Navy is pleased to add Sri Lanka to our list of CARAT partners in 2017 as part of our larger efforts to expand both bilateral and multilateral maritime security engagement across the Indo-Asia-Pacific region,” said Commodore Robert Baughman, Commander, Task Force-75.

Training exchanges will be conducted on the Sri Lankan Navy base in Trincomalee from Oct. 2-6, 2017. The week-long exercise is designed to enhance maritime security skills and operations cohesiveness among participating forces, it also focuses on relationship building between military participants through sports and social events.

U.S. Navy assets participating CARAT Sri Lanka 2017 include Commander, Task Group 75.5, Coastal Riverine Group 1, Underwater Construction Team 2 and U.S. Marines with Fleet Anti-terrorism Security Team Pacific.

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