MUMBAI, India (NNS) -- USS Dubuque (LPD 8), a Cleveland-class amphibious transport dock ship, visited its second port in India March 31 through April 4, giving the crew the chance to experience the country's largest city and continue to work toward building stronger U.S.-India relations.
The stop in Mumbai was a continuation of a similarly focused visit made recently to Visakhapatnam.
"Our visit to Mumbai serves as an incredible opportunity for this crew to visit one of the most enriching cities that we have visited during this deployment," said Dubuque Commanding Officer Capt. William C. Hamilton at the beginning of the visit. "We look forward in showcasing this LPD to officials and military members of this country."
Upon arrival to Mumbai, U.S. Sailors escorted Indian Sailors around the ship to give them a chance to see the equipment and capabilities of the landing transport dock.
The information is important for the Indian Navy as it prepares to welcome INS Jlashwa, formerly known as USS Trenton (LPD 14) before it was decommissioned Jan. 17 and then immediately transferred to the Indian Navy. Jlashwa is now on its way from Norfolk to India.
While in Mumbai, Dubuque welcomed aboard Mumbai's U.S. Consul General Michael S. Owen, with a reception that also allowed U.S. and Indian Sailors to further discuss the commonalities of naval service.
At the reception, Owen spoke to both navies on the ever-growing relationship of India and the United States.
"Relations between the U.S. and India are well-founded and are increasing due to the interoperability of our militaries," he said. "The presence of Dubuque here is a symbol of those relations. I look forward to seeing the relationship between our two navies and our two nations continue to grow."
Owen, who has been in his position for the past two years, has seen that closeness develop in the form of interoperability due to combined training like the multinational Exercise Malabar.
"I think there is tremendous potential, and I think it is great that the Dubuque came here to train. I think there are a lot of things that we can accomplish together in the Indian Ocean," said Owen.
Dubuque's Command Master Chief (SW/SS) Brent W. Williams expressed similar thoughts.
"I think the visits were very productive because of the interaction with the Indian enlisted personnel. They were fascinated with the similarities that we had, compared to how they do business," said Williams. "They learned from us, and we learned from them."
Dubuque is part of Boxer Expeditionary Strike Group (BOXESG), operating out of San Diego, and is currently reporting operationally to the commander of Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG) 7/Task Force (CTF) 76, the Navy's only forward-deployed amphibious task force.
For more news from Commander, Amphibious Force, U.S. 7th Fleet visit www.news.navy.mil/local/ctf76/.