US Navy destroyer conducts cooperative deployment with Indian Navy after Goa Port visit


Bolstering the US, and India collaboration to improve security in the Indo-Pacific region, the US and Indian marine teams carried out a Cooperative Deployment (CODEP) in the Indian Ocean on July 18. The U.S. Navy destroyer worked with the Indian Navy frigate INS Tarkash (F-50), and the operations focused on building interoperability and strengthening relationships through maneuvering and communication exercises. The operation took place after the U.S. Navy’s ship visited Goa.

USS Stethem, an Arleigh Burke class Destroyer, visited Goa from 16 to 18 July 2023. During her stay in the harbor, cross-deck visits aimed at the exchange of best practices and strengthening ties were undertaken with Indian Navy’s guided missile frigate, INS Tarkash. In addition, Commanding Officer of USS Stethem called on NOIC (Goa). On departure from Goa, INS Tarkash and USS Stethem conducted a maritime partnership exercise to hone operational skills and improve interoperability.

Stethem is operating as part of Commander, Task Force 71, U.S. 7th Fleet’s principal surface force. CTF 71 is responsible for the readiness, tactical and administrative responsibilities for forward-deployed Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers as well as any surface unit conducting independent operations in the region. U.S. 7th Fleet is the U.S. Navy’s largest forward-deployed numbered fleet, and routinely interacts and operates with allies and partners in preserving a free and open Indo-Pacific region.

The U.S.-India bilateral operations included division tactics, a passing exercise, and formation sailing, providing both navies the opportunity to work together to further common maritime goals.

Port calls are part of the U.S. Navy’s routine operations reflecting mutual interest between the U.S. and its partner nations and allowing sailors an opportunity to decompress from the high demand of life at sea, contributing to the overall mission readiness of the ship.

“The port visit reinforces President Biden and Prime Minister Modi’s commitment to an Indo-Pacific region built on shared values and principles as we strengthen the relationship between our two countries,” said U.S. Consul General of Mumbai Mike Hankey. “We recognize and value India’s role and leadership in the Indo-Pacific region at large. Working in concert with India, we will advance the rules-based order and maintain peace and stability in the region.”

Officers of the Indian Navy were also taken on a tour hosted by second tour division officers aboard the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Stethem in Goa port on July 17.

“Stethem Sailors greatly enjoyed the opportunity to work closely with our partners in the region, working together with the Indian Navy allowed us to gain a greater appreciation for creating stability off their coast following our successful port visit,” said Cmdr. James “Nate” Watts, commanding officer of Stethem. “The operations on India’s West Coast, sailing together, show our strong commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific.”


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