US and Finnish navies to increase readiness in the Baltic
The USS Kearsarge (LHD 3) Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and embarked 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) conducted a bilateral training exercise with members of the Finnish Armed Forces, the USN reported on 18 August.
The nine-day exercise was ‘highly successful, according to the USN. It was set out to increase readiness and interoperability between the Finnish Navy Command in the northern Baltic Sea and the region of Hanko and the US in the Baltics.
The allies reportedly practised several different offshore scenarios and maritime exercise events, including amphibious well-deck operations, mine countermeasure demonstrations, ship manoeuvring drills and several quick-response medical exercises.
USN and Finnish personnel also shared techniques and procedures to improve communication and coordination.
While ashore, personnel conducted EOD exercises and tactical recovery of aircraft and personnel, as well as live-fire training and tactics sharing.
The training exercise follows the Kearsarge’s port visit to Helsinki, Finland, between 5 and 8 August. While in port, the US amphibious assault ship hosted various members of Finland’s military and political leadership through a series of key leader engagements and meetings.
These engagements laid the groundwork for the ensuing bilateral training, the USN said in a statement.
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