Royal Australian Navy Capt. Brendon Zilko, left, and Pacific Partnership 2019 Mission Commander U.S. Navy Capt. Randy Van Rossum wave to the Military Sealift Command expeditionary fast transport ship USNS Brunswick (T-EPF 6) as it departs Naval Base Guam for Pacific Partnership 2019 on March 4, 2019, in Santa Rita, Guam. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Nicholas Burgains)

14th Pacific Partnership Mission Aims to Enhance Disaster Response Cooperation

The U.S. Navy will join allied and partner nation forces for the 14th Pacific Partnership mission, scheduled to begin March 4. This annual maritime operation will help improve disaster response preparedness, resiliency and capacity while enhancing partnerships with participating nations and civilian humanitarian organizations throughout the Indo-Pacific.

Pacific Partnership is the largest annual, multilateral disaster response preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Pacific. This year’s mission will be led by Commander, Destroyer Squadron 1, embarked in the expeditionary fast transport ships USNS Brunswick (T-EPF 6) and USNS Fall River (T-EPF 4). It will include more than 500 military and civilian personnel from Australia, Canada, Japan, Malaysia, Peru, the Philippines, South Korea, Thailand, the United Kingdom and the United States.

“Pacific Partnership is about building trust and sharing knowledge,” said Rear Adm. Joey Tynch, commander, Task Force 73, the executive agent for Pacific Partnership 2019. “This mission shows that the U.S., our partners and hosts are working together to making this region better prepared for disaster response.”

Experts in the fields of engineering, medicine and disaster response will partner with each host country to conduct civic-action projects, community health exchanges, medical symposiums and disaster response training activities.

Engagements between Pacific Partnership participants and host nations are intended to improve capacity, enhance regional partnerships and increase multilateral cooperation for disaster preparedness.

“Pacific Partnership brings nations together to prepare in calm to respond in crisis,” said Capt. Randy Van Rossum, commodore, Destroyer Squadron 1, the mission commander for Pacific Partnership 2019. “Our mission team, made up of servicemembers and volunteers from around the world, reflects this enduring commitment to the region.”

Pacific Partnership began in response to one of the world’s most catastrophic natural disasters, the December 2004 tsunami that devastated parts of South and Southeast Asia. The mission has evolved over the years from emphasis on direct care to an operation focused on enhancing partnerships through host nation subject matter expert and civil-military exchanges.

Read more at U.S. 7th Fleet

The Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today (HSToday) is the premier news and information resource for the homeland security community, dedicated to elevating the discussions and insights that can support a safe and secure nation. A non-profit magazine and media platform, HSToday provides readers with the whole story, placing facts and comments in context to inform debate and drive realistic solutions to some of the nation’s most vexing security challenges.

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