WHITE BEACH NAVAL FACILITY, OKINAWA, Japan (Sept. 28, 2009) – --
Approximately 2000 Marines and sailors from the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) kicked off their Fall Patrol of the Asia-Pacific Region, Sept. 27.
The Denver Amphibious Task Group, comprised of the forward-deployed amphibious transport dock ship USS Denver (LPD 9), the forward-deployed amphibious dock landing ship USS Tortuga (LSD 46) and the forward-deployed amphibious dock landing ship USS Harpers Ferry (LSD 49), are scheduled to set sail for the Republic of the Philippines as part of Amphibious Landing Exercise 2010 (PHIBLEX ’10).
As part of PHIBLEX ‘10, the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the U.S. Armed Forces are slated to work alongside to provide healthcare, conduct engineering and community relation projects in remote regions of the country.
Bilateral training will also take place in order to improve interoperability, increase readiness, and continue to build professional relationships between the Republic of the Philippines and the United States.
According to Col. Paul L. Damren, MEU Commanding Officer, “Once armed with these core capabilities, the main effort will be to conduct operations that enhance the security capabilities of partner nations and alleviate the underlying conditions that give rise to instability.”
As a force in readiness, the MEU continually conducts non-combatant evacuation operations (NEO), foreign humanitarian assistance/disaster relief operations (FHA/DR) and amphibious raid exercises.
Media interested in covering these events may contact the MEU public affairs officer, Capt. Jorge Escatell at Jorge.email@example.com, or Amphibious Ready Squadron 11 Public Affairs Officer, Navy Lt. David Shark at firstname.lastname@example.org.