The Aircraft Carrier USS Carl Vinson, Essex Amphibious Ready Group Drill in the South China Sea

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Left to right, USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70), Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS O’Kane (DDG-77), Wasp-class helicopter landing dock USS Essex (LHD-2), dock Harpers Ferry-class landing ship USS Pearl Harbor (LSD-52) and the Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship USNS Alan Shephard (T-AKE-3) transit the South China Sea on January 13, 2022. US Navy Photo

KULALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – The Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group and Essex The ready amphibious ready group with the embarked 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit is currently drilling in the South China Sea.

Images broadcast by the American aircraft carrier USS Navy Carl Vinson (CVN-70), USS landing helicopter dock Essex (LHD-2), amphibious dock landing ship USS wearing pearls (LSD-52), cruiser USS Lake Champlain (CG-57), destroyer USS Michael Murphy (DDG-112), USNS dry freighter Alan Shephard (T-AKE-3) and supply ship USNS John Ericsson (T-AO-194) sailing in the South China Sea on Thursday.

Essex’s ARG initially consisted of Essex, wearing pearls and USS amphibious transport dock Portland (LPD-27), but it seems that Portland has since parted ways with the group following ARG’s departure from the Middle East in early January. USS Destroyers O’Kane (DDG-77) and Michael Murphy then joins the ARG in the Indian Ocean. Both destroyers were deployed as part of the Carl Vinson CSG in August, but operate with the Essex ARG.

Essex conducted an exercise with the Indian Navy corvette INS Kora (P61) and an Indian Navy P-8I earlier this week in the eastern Indian Ocean before transiting through the Strait of Malacca on January 11 towards the South China Sea.

during this time, destroyer USS Dewey (DDG-105) – which was also deployed as part of the Carl Vinson CSG – is operating in the East China Sea as part of Commander Task Force (CTF) 71/DESRON 15 and conducted a replenishment at sea there on Wednesday with Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Supply Ship JS Oumi (AOE-426).

In other developments, a Russian Navy Pacific Fleet Task Force which includes the cruiser RFS Varyag (011), destroyer Admiral Tributes (564) and mothership Boris Butoma arrived in Kochi, India on Thursday for a port call. The task force left Vladivostok on December 29 for a long-range deployment to a number of unspecified countries, although a Russian Navy press release said the ships would visit Seychelles to coincide with the 105th anniversary of the Russian protected cruiser. Variag’s visit in August 1916. The Russian task force should leave on Friday for Chabahar, Iran.

The JMSDF JS mine countermeasures vessel is also heading to the Middle East from the Indian Ocean. Uraga (MST-463) and JS minesweeper Hirado (MSO-305). The two ships carried out an exercise with the Indian Navy frigate INS Shivalik (F47) and INS corvette Kadmatt (P29) Thursday in the Bay of Bengal. Uraga and Hirado departed Japan on December 12 and are scheduled to participate in International Maritime Exercise (IMX) 22 hosted by the U.S. 5th Fleet from January 30 to February 17. Both ships are due to return to Japan at the end of March.

German Navy frigate FGS bavaria (F217) is in the Indian Ocean, heading to Sri Lanka after completing the Asia-Pacific portion of her deployment. bavaria conducted a passing exercise with the Republic of Singapore Navy frigate RSS Formidable (68) off Singapore on Tuesday, after departing Vietnam on January 9. bavaria then carried out a passage exercise in the Straits of Malacca on Wednesday with six Royal Malaysian Navy ships – multi-role support vessel KD Sri Inderasakti (1503), KD frigate Jebat (FFGH29), corvette KD Lekir (FSG26) and KD Laksamana Hang Nadim (F134), KD littoral mission vessel Sundang (112) and KD fast attack craft Gemita (3514). Many RMN ships participated in the PASSEX with bavaria because the NMR is also conducting the NMR Western Fleet Readiness and Combat Exercise for the Pangkor War in the Straits of Malacca.

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