Maritime forces from Australia, India, Japan, and the United States completed Phase II of the multi-lateral naval exercise, Malabar 2020, November 20. The exercise improved integration between Australian, Indian, Japanese, and U.S. maritime forces and provide an opportunity to conduct engagements highlighting cooperation between allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific. With the arrival of Nimitz Carrier Strike Group in Phase II, nations involved were able to further strengthening the integration of their naval air forces through air and air defense exercises.
“The exercises conducted during Malabar provided opportunities to enhance our interoperability and strengthens our maritime partnerships with India, Australia, and Japan,” said Capt. Elaine Collins, commander, Destroyer Squadron 9. “Our ability to replenish ships at sea, conduct live firing exercises and communicate with one another, ship-to-ship, demonstrates our cooperation and shared goals of fostering security and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.”
The events of Phase II of Malabar included a photo exercise, night operations, air defense exercises, helicopter cross-deck evolutions, carrier landing approaches, underway replenishment approaches, gunnery exercises, and antisubmarine warfare exercises. Malabar 2020 is the latest in a continuing series of exercises that have grown in scope and complexity over the years to address the variety of shared threats to maritime security in the Indo-Pacific where the U.S. Navy has patrolled for more than 70 years promoting regional peace and security.
“Operating with Australia, India, and Japan via cross-deck landings, carrier landing approaches and aerial refueling during Malabar has been instrumental in enhancing the compatibility of our naval air forces,” said Capt. Todd Cimicata, commander, Carrier Air Wing 17. “We are honored by the professionalism of our partners, and look forward to flying together again as we reinforce our mutual desire to improve maritime security in the global commons.”
Nimitz Carrier Strike Group is currently deployed to the 7th Fleet area of operations in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific. Carrier Strike Group 11 (CSG-11 or CARSTRKGRU 11) is a U.S. Navy carrier strike group. Carrier strike groups gain and maintain sea control as well as project naval airpower ashore. The aircraft carrier Nimitz is the strike group’s current flagship. Other units currently assigned to the group include the cruisers Lake Erie and Princeton, and Destroyer Squadron 9.
U.S. 7th Fleet conducts forward-deployed naval operations in support of U.S. national interests in the Indo-Pacific area of operations. As the U.S. Navy’s largest numbered fleet, 7th Fleet interacts with 35 other maritime nations to build partnerships that foster maritime security, promote stability, and prevent conflict. The Seventh Fleet is a numbered fleet of the United States Navy. It is headquartered at U.S. Fleet Activities Yokosuka, in Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan.