ASW drill Guardian Sea starting in Thailand

US and Royal Thai Navy (RTN) ships and submarines are teaming up for a five-day anti-submarine and maritime domain awareness exercise which will be taking place in the Andaman Sea from April 25.

The exercise is called Guardian Sea and will involve cooperative evolutions designed to enhance mutual capabilities in anti-submarine warfare while also improving information sharing between the two navies.

The guided-missile destroyer USS Halsey (DDG-97), a Los Angeles-class fast attack submarine and a P-8 Poseidon will be participating from the US Navy.

Participating assets from the RTN include helicopter carrier HTMS Chakri Naruebet (CVH 911), Khamronsin-class corvette HTMS Long Lom (FS 533), Naresuan-class frigate HTMS Taksin (FFG 422) and HTMS Naresuan, and S-70B Seahawk helicopter.

“Guardian Sea is an increasingly sophisticated and robust exercise that enables the U.S. Navy and Royal Thai Navy to continue working closely together and learning from each other,” said Capt. Lex Walker, commodore of Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 7. “Each year, as allies, our two nations are becoming increasingly capable in mutually conducting anti-submarine warfare that ensures security and stability in the maritime domain.”

The US and Royal Thai Navy will conduct subject matter expert exchanges in every aspect of anti-submarine warfare focusing on tracking submarines in a variety of conditions and concludes with evolutions designed to incorporate learned techniques shared throughout Guardian Sea.

“The Royal Thai Navy and U.S. Navy continue to demonstrate a strong relationship in every aspect of maritime operations,” said Capt Anupong Taprasob, Royal Thai Navy. “We are fully committed to further strengthening this partnership well into the future with even greater and more complex naval tactic as well as maritime security exercises each year.”

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