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4th Fleet Conducts Maritime Staff Talks with Argentine Navy

02 July 2021

From U.S. 4th Fleet Public Affairs

MAYPORT, Fla. - Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. 4th Fleet, Rear Adm. Don Gabrielson, hosted delegates from the Argentine Navy (Armada de la Republica de Argentina, or ARA) for the annual Maritime Staff Talks (MST) June 30.

Annual MSTs support the U.S. maritime strategy, “Advantage at Sea,” by building and strengthening working relationships between U.S. and partner nation maritime forces.

“We are fortunate to have a great working relationship with our Argentine partners,” said Gabrielson. Our future operations and exercises together will only deepen that relationship.”

Gabrielson, along with Brig. Gen. Michael McWilliams, Deputy Commander, U.S. Marine Corps Forces South, led the U.S. delegation. Rear Adm. Daniel Abbondanza, Commander of Training and Readiness, and Rear Adm. Guillermo Rios, Commandant of the Argentine Marine Corps, led the Argentine delegation.

“The recent participation of our officers in the PANAMAX exercise in the important role of combined force maritime component commander enabled us to strengthen our ties and work together,” said Abbondanza. “Exercising a combined plan of operational capabilities is essential as today’s threats require a multinational approach to confront them.”

Delegates discussed PANAMAX 2022, a multinational exercise designed to ensure the defense of the Panama Canal. The Argentine Navy will again lead the maritime component just as they did in the recently completed 2021 exercise.

Additionally, delegates discussed UNITAS 2021, the longest-running maritime exercise in the world, hosted in Peru later this year, Argentina is planning to participate with ships, a helicopter, Marines and maritime action officers.

Argentine delegates presented information on their new maritime forces and operational capabilities designed to improve maritime domain awareness and address Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) fishing, which the U.S. Coast Guard now calls the leading global maritime security threat.

“We are excited to work alongside our Argentine Partners as they continue to combat maritime challenges such as illegal, unregulated, and unreported fishing,” said Lt. Cmdr. Windsor Frinell, U.S. 4th Fleet Foreign Area Officer. “They excelled as CFMCC in PANAMAX and we look forward to working together during UNITAS building interoperability and building trust.”

The MST serves as a comprehensive engagement venue for all bilateral maritime security cooperation activities. The U.S. and Argentina conduct annual meetings to synchronize the numerous engagements that the U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard schedule, plan and execute with their Argentine counterparts.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the talks occurred virtually via the All Partner Access Network (APAN) and the Combined Enterprise Regional Information Exchange System (CENTRIXS).

U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. 4th Fleet supports U.S. Southern Command’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 region.

Learn more about USNAVSO/4th Fleet at https://www.facebook.com/NAVSOUS4THFLT and @NAVSOUS4THFLT

 

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