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Exercise Arabian Gauntlet Concludes in Gulf

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS070506-03
Release Date: 5/6/2007 1:17:00 PM

From U.S. Naval Forces Central Command/U.S. 5th Fleet Public Affairs

PERSIAN GULF (NNS) -- Sixteen ships from 14 coalition and regional allies concluded Exercise Arabian Gauntlet 2007, the world’s largest mine countermeasures exercise, April 30 in the Persian Gulf.

Arabian Gauntlet is a biennial, multilateral exercise that integrates mine warfare with surface warfare.

“The purpose of the exercise is to refine coalition warfare capabilities, specifically in the area of mine warfare, surface warfare and off-shore infrastructure protection,” said Lt. Lester Person, Destroyer Squadron 50 exercise engagement officer. “It also promotes military-to-military relationships and improves the tactical proficiency of the coalition as well as enhances regional security in the [U.S.] 5th Fleet area of responsibility.”

Arabian Gauntlet is a two-phase evolution. Two days of training seminars precede an eight-day underway phase.

Person stressed the significance of the 14 coalition and regional countries’ participation in the exercise.

“The coalition is vital to promoting regional security and maintaining stability in this region,” said Person. “Exercises are merely preparations for real-world operations.”

Coalition forces maintain stability in the region by conducting maritime security operations (MSO). MSO help set the conditions for security and stability in the maritime environment, as well as complement the counter-terrorism and security efforts of regional nations. These operations deny international terrorists the use of the maritime environment as a venue for attack or to transport personnel, weapons or other material.

Person was pleased with the outcome of Arabian Gauntlet.

“Overall, this was a terrific exercise that flexed several dimensions of mine and surface warfare. Support from all personnel was outstanding, and the interpersonal relationships developed during the exercise will be vital to enhancing and maintaining security and stability throughout the region."

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