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NEWS | April 10, 2024

U.S., Australian, and French Naval Forces Conduct Trilateral Operations

By Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet Public Affairs

The U.S. Navy, Royal Australian Navy (RAN), and French Navy (FN) joined forces to conduct trilateral operations in the South China Sea, April 9.

The trilateral operations included the U.S. Navy Independence-variant littoral combat ship USS Mobile (LCS 26), RAN Anzac-class HMAS Warramunga (FFH 152), and French Navy Floréal-class frigate FS Vendémiaire (F 734).

“This exercise is one marked by collaboration, camaraderie, and a shared commitment to maritime security,” said Capt. Justin Harts, Commander, Destroyer Squadron 15. “Sailing alongside our partners and allies provides invaluable experience gained, forging bonds that strengthen our resolve and deepen our shared understanding of the Indo-Pacific." 

The U.S. Navy regularly operates alongside allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific region as a demonstration of our shared commitment to the rules-based international order.

“During its deployments in the Pacific, the French Navy seizes opportunities to operate alongside other maritime forces in the region as it is committed to multilateralism. This exercise with the US Navy and RAN is seen as another occasion to foster coordination and cooperation in combined activities” said Cdr. Sébastien Drouelle, commanding officer, FS Vendémiaire. “With such an exercise, led in the framework of freedom of navigation and international laws, we will mutually benefit from one another and strengthen interoperability at sea with our allies and partners in this region.”

Multilateral operations provide valuable opportunities to train, exercise and develop tactical interoperability across allied navies in the Indo-Pacific.

“The Australian Defence Force’s near continuous presence in the Indo-Pacific demonstrates our resolve for a peaceful, secure and prosperous region,” Commodore Jonathan Ley, Australia’s Joint Force Maritime Component Commander said. “Opportunities such as this to operate with allies and partners while in the region enhance our ability to respond cooperatively to shared security challenges and humanitarian crises.” 

Commander, Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 15 is U.S. 7th Fleet’s principal surface force. DESRON 15 is responsible for the readiness, tactical and administrative responsibilities for forward-deployed Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers as well as any surface unit conducting independent operations in the region.

U.S. 7th Fleet is the U.S. Navy's largest forward-deployed numbered fleet and routinely interacts and operates with allies and partners in preserving a free and open Indo-Pacific region.


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