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Nations Meet to Plan 56th UNITAS Exercise

Navy News Service

Story Number: NNS150401-16
Release Date: 4/1/2015 2:45:00 PM

By U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. 4th Fleet Public Affairs

RIO DE JANEIRO (NNS) -- Navy representatives from seven countries gathered in Rio De Janeiro for the UNITAS Atlantic Initial Planning Conference March 30-Apr. 1.

The Brazilian navy hosted the conference to plan for UNITAS 56-15, the 56th iteration of the annual multinational maritime exercise series.

'2015 marks the 56th iteration of the UNITAS exercises, in which the U.S. Navy and our partner nation navies train together to enhance interoperability and theater security cooperation,' said Rear Adm. George Ballance, commander, U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/4th Fleet. 'This exercise, offers all of the participating nations an opportunity to enhance a cooperative maritime strategy that is in all of our best interests.'

UNITAS 56-15 is scheduled to begin in early November off the coast of Brazil with participants from Brazil, Peru, Chile, Mexico, Senegal, Honduras, Cameroon and the United States Navy.

The purpose of the conference was to define the schedule of events, topics, activities and delegate responsibilities in support of UNITAS. The training exercises focus on logistics, communications, combat doctrines and other inter service interests between the partner nations.

The annual UNITAS exercise series, which consists of two phases - Atlantic and Pacific - supports the U.S. Maritime Strategy, by bringing partner nation navies together to improve interoperability and build working relationships at sea.

U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command and U.S. 4th Fleet support USSOUTHCOM's joint and combined military operations by employing maritime forces in cooperative maritime security operations to maintain access, enhance interoperability and build enduring partnerships in order to enhance regional security and promote peace, stability and prosperity in the Caribbean, Central and South American regions.

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