The Legend-class national security cutter USCGC Hamilton (WMSL 753) conducted a series of operational exercises with Ukraine, May 9, 2021, in the Black Sea. Hamilton conducted maritime law enforcement, search and rescue, and ship handling operations with the Ukrainian navy vessel Island-class patrol boat Starobilsk (P 241). These operations were designed to increase interoperability as a part of a regional effort to bolster maritime partnerships with NATO partners.
The U.S. Coast Guard has a long and enduring partnership with regional maritime forces, particularly in strengthening maritime forces in Georgia and Ukraine. Hamilton conducted at sea engagements with the Georgian coast guard and a port visit in Batumi, Georgia, last week. Hamilton is the first U.S. Coast Guard cutter to visit the Black Sea since 2008. The last U.S. Coast Guard cutter to visit the Black Sea, USCGC Dallas (WHEC 716), sailed to the Black Sea twice, in 2008 and 1995.
Hamilton is the fourth national security cutter and is the fifth cutter named for the father of the U.S. Coast Guard – Alexander Hamilton, the first Secretary of the Treasury and advocate for the creation of the U.S. Revenue Cutter Service. The U.S. Coast Guard remains operational during COVID-19, following all COVID-19 safety precautions and regulations.
The U.S. Coast Guard is conducting a routine deployment in the U.S. Sixth Fleet area of operations, working alongside NATO Allies and partners, building maritime domain awareness, and sharing best practices with partner nation navies and coast guards. U.S. Sixth Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied and interagency partners, to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.