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Japan Ground Self Defense Force Visits USS Juneau

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS070914-12
Release Date: 9/14/2007 3:08:00 PM

By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Michael Gomez, USS Juneau Public Affairs

SASEBO, Japan (NNS) -- Japan Ground Self Defense Force (JGSDF) Army personnel and recruits visited USS Juneau (LPD 10) Sept. 11, for a tour of the ship.

Fifteen JGSDF staff members and 28 recruits arrived from Omura City’s Camp Takematsu to see what life is like on a naval warship. The tour allowed the members to visit various sites such as the ship’s bridge, medical and dental facilities, well deck and flight deck.

“I’m very impressed with the size of the ship and its capabilities," said JGSDF Capt. Yasuhiro Matsuo. "It was a very good tour; I enjoyed my tour on the ship.”

Juneau continues to strengthen its relationship with Japan’s military forces and its local community.

“Our friendship and security pact continues to be strengthened year after year,” said Senior Chief Operations Specialist (SW) Gary D. Boldes. “Doing the tour today shows the good relationship that we have. When we have tours and events with the Japanese military and the community, it opens many doors for us and builds a stronger relationship.”

At the end of the tour, Capt. Kent D. Whalen, Juneau’s commanding officer personally greeted all JGSDF members and thanked them for visiting the ship.

“It’s great to have the JGSDF on board our warship,” said Whalen. “I enjoyed having them as our guest. Having the tour does a lot for the cooperation and teamwork between our two nations here on our forward deployed naval force.”

Juneau is the only forward-deployed amphibious transport dock and is forward-deployed in Sasebo, Japan. Juneau serves under Task Force 76, the Navy’s only forward-deployed amphibious force. Task Force 76 is headquartered at White Beach Naval Facility, Okinawa, Japan, with an operating detachment in Sasebo, Japan.

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