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USS Thomas Hudner Conducts Port Visit in Kiel Following Joint Maritime Exercise with NATO Allies and Partner Nations

23 June 2021

From USS Dwight D. Eisenhower Public Affairs

KIEL, Germany - The Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS Thomas Hudner (DDG 116) conducted a four-day port visit in Kiel, Germany, June 22, 2021, after participating in the 50th iteration of Exercise BALTOPS, a joint, maritime-focused exercise to increase interoperability and enhance flexibility between NATO allies and partners.

During the port visit, crew members had an opportunity to visit Kiel and take time to rest and unwind while being in full compliance with U.S. Navy COVID-19 standing guidance.

“Thomas Hudner’s crew was excited to visit Kiel and to experience the great hospitality of our German allies after participating in BALTOPS 50,” said Cmdr. Bo Mancuso, commanding officer, USS Thomas Hudner (DDG 116). “Conducting realistic and relevant training is essential to maintain readiness and maritime security. Through our steadfast commitment to our NATO allies and European partners, we will remain vigilant to defend, deter and when necessary, fight to protect a strong, free and prosperous U.S. and Europe.”

Mancuso added that the crew was excited to demonstrate the numerous capabilities that U.S. warships bring to integrated operations and are looking forward to future opportunities to participate in similar exercises.   

BALTOPS 50 was conducted between June 6-18, bringing both air and maritime assets from 16 NATO allied countries and two partner nations together to participate in events such as air defense, anti-submarine warfare, amphibious operations, maritime interdiction, and mine countermeasure operations. Participating nations include: Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

“Having the opportunity to explore Kiel after BALTOPS was phenomenal,” said Gunner’s Mate Third Class Thomas Bishop. “I bought some souvenirs for my parents and had a great time experiencing German food with my friends.”

Dwight D. Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group is a multiplatform team of ships, aircraft and more than 5,000 Sailors, capable of carrying out a wide variety of missions around the globe. The Navy provides a ready, flexible force capable of responding to a broad range of contingencies.

U.S. 6th Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.

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