US, Japan warships sail together in Philippine Sea, East China Sea

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United States Navy amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA 6) and Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) Murasame-class destroyer JS Akebono (DD 108) conducted a series of collaborative events while sailing in the Philippine Sea and East China Sea from April 9 to 11.

US Navy photo

“We are excited to be sailing alongside our Japanese friends and teammates in the East China Sea, just as our team aboard USS Gabrielle Giffords did in the Andaman Sea last week,” said America Expeditionary Strike Group commander Rear Admiral Fred Kacher.

“In these challenging times, it is deeply important that we continue to come together as allies and partners in this incredibly vital region of the world,” Rear Admiral Kacher said.

JS Akebono commanding officer Cmdr. Kobayashi Seitaro said “We could show our skill and capability though this exercise.”

“I am convinced that Japan-U.S. relationship and interoperability is enhanced more strongly,” Cmdr. Seitaro added.

“The America ESG and JMSDF have maintained superior cooperative ability since America’s forward deployment to the region,” said Capt. Richard Lebron, Amphibious Squadron 11 Commodore. “The importance of providing a versatile and mission-ready strike group to the region cannot be overstated. America continues to provide steadfast support and interoperability with the JMSDF and other allies and partners.”