The U.S. Navy and Royal Thai Navy (RTN) kicked off exercise Guardian Sea in the Andaman Sea on April 25.
The five-day anti-submarine and maritime domain awareness exercise 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 U.S. 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 U.S. 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."
The U.S. Navy and the Royal Thai Navy conduct numerous annually-held engagements including the bilateral and multilateral Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) which began in 1995, Southeast Asia Cooperation and Training (SEACAT), and Cobra Gold, the Asia-Pacific's largest multinational exercise.
"The P-8 Poseidon brings an unmatched maritime surveillance capability to a wide-spectrum of operations including anti-submarine warfare," said Cmdr Bryan Hager, commanding officer of Patrol Squadron (VP) 4. "We will be working side-by-side with our Royal Thai Navy counterparts through each mission and look forward to gaining and sharing knowledge."
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