(UPI) — The U.S. Coast Guard conducted Arabian Gulf exercises this week with a Greek navy guided-missile frigate, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command said on Friday.
The Greek ship HS Hydra joined cutters and patrol boats of the U.S. Coast Guard Patrol Forces Southwest Asia on Thursday for passing exercises between the two NATO partners.
The participating Coast Guard unit is the largest one outside of the United States, and supports U.S. Navy maritime security and infrastructure protection operations in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations.
“This exercise was a great opportunity to work alongside our Greek partners to increase tactical proficiency and capabilities,” Lt. Ben Williams, commanding officer of patrol boat USCGC Maui, said in a statement.
“As a crew we are always confident in our operational capabilities and working with the crew of Hydra validated our combined readiness,” Williams said.
The maneuvers focused on passing exercises, known as PASSEX, which typically involve flashing light, semaphore and flaghoist drills, as well as electronic and digital coordination.
In a social media message, Gen. Konstantinos Floros, chief of the Hellenic National Defense General Staff, referred to the exercise as an “historical high.”
Ακόμα μία συνεκπαίδευση Ενόπλων Δυνάμεων Ελλάδος και ΗΠΑ. Η Αμυντική Συνεργασία των δύο χωρών σε ΙΣΤΟΡΙΚΟ ΥΨΗΛΟ #togetherwearestronger 🇷🇺🇸 @Hellenic_MOD @DeptofDefense @USEmbassyAthens @hndgspio @NavyGR @HAFspokesman @USNavy pic.twitter.com/eePRIdpdu8
— GEN Konstantinos Floros (@ChiefHNDGS) February 20, 2021