04/20/2021

Second exercise this month between USS Wichita (LCS 13) and Dominican Republic Navy

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Throughout the exercise, both forces were able to practice a series of movements and tactical formations aboard the ships.

Last week, the littoral combat ship USS Wichita (LCS 13), variant Freedom, carried out a bilateral maritime exercise with its counterparts from the Dominican Republic, while operating in the Caribbean Sea.

According to a press release, this exercise gave the navies of both countries the opportunity to demonstrate their interoperability for future tactical operations, maintain reaction capacity at sea and support the continued commitment to security in the region.

“This exercise was a significant increase in complexity, building on our previous interactions with Dominican Republic forces,” said Commander Daniel Reiher, Wichita’s commanding officer.

“The coordination between three ships that simulate operations at sea is a capacity with real importance and training opportunities,” said the officer.

Throughout the exercise, both forces were able to practice a series of tactical movements and formations aboard the ships, as well as test command and control and communication capabilities. The information adds that the exercise provided an opportunity for both countries to work together to improve their capabilities against shared threats.

“This exercise was a great opportunity to practice our own boarding tactics, while continuing to build a healthy relationship with our counterparts in the Dominican Republic,” said Chief Intendant Ángel Rodríguez, the vessel’s officer, during the exercise. “Being able to practice good seamanship allows our crew to continue developing our maritime skills.”

This was the second exercise conducted this month between Wichita and the Dominican Republic Navy. On this occasion, the coastal patrol vessel Orión (GC 109) and the coastal patrol vessel Betelguese (GC 102), the newest in the Dominican Republic, participated; donated last August 2020 by the Department of State and the US Southern Command.

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Wichita is assigned to the United States 4th Fleet area of ​​operations to support mission of Joint Interagency Task Force South, which includes combating illicit drug trafficking in the Caribbean and Eastern Pacific.

The United States Naval Forces Southern Command and the United States 4th Fleet support joint and combined military operations of Southern Command employing maritime forces in joint maritime security operations to maintain access, improve interoperability, and create lasting partnerships with in order to improve regional security and promote peace, stability and prosperity in the Caribbean region, Central and South America, reports the press release.