Oct 22, 2012

Cambodia - US, Cambodia hold maritime exercises

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The United States Navy will join the Royal Cambodian Navy in the third Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (Carat) exercise in Sihanoukville this week, the US Embassy said.

A statement release Saturday said the exercise involving the crew of the USS Vandegrift would run from Monday to Friday.

"The exercise will focus on enhancing maritime security skills through activities such as maritime interdiction, diving and salvage operations, manoeuvering, and disaster response," the statement said.

It also aims "to increase cooperation, promote understanding, and build trust between the US and Royal Cambodian navies through sports and social events."

The statement said the exercise would also "improve relationships with the civilian community through community service projects." As part of the effort, the Seventh Fleet Band will give a free public concert in Kampot on Wednesday.

Carat exercises have taken place every year in the Southeast Asian region since 1995, with Cambodia participating for the first time in 2010, the embassy said. Other participants include Bangladesh, Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, Singapore, and Timor Leste.

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