Pacific Partnership launched in H’tota

2017-03-08 19:26:20

USNS Fall River, the expeditionary fast transport ship of the US Navy, arrived in Sri Lanka’s Hambantota Port on Tuesday to provide a platform for the two-week-long multinational humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission conducting by the Pacific Partnership.

Pacific Partnership’s mission in Sri Lanka include a number of both military and civilian experts from the US, Australia and Japan apart from Sri Lanka.

Civil engineers, medical experts and other specialists are scheduled to hold health campaigns, civil engineering projects including school renovation programmes and health fairs focusing the locals.

Commenting on the first ever pacific partnership mission in the country, Commander Southern Naval Area, Rear Admiral Nishantha Ulugetenne said the mission would help partner nations to work together as one team to overcome any emergency situation with effective results.

“At the end of the mission, training will be provided to military personnel to be prepared to handle disasters effectively and how to face them not only in partner nations but also in any nation. Forty eight activities including subject matter exchanges, health camps and band performances would be held during the two weeks,” he said.

He said he believed Hambantota was the perfect pick to execute Pacific Partnership.

Meanwhile, Rear Admiral Don Gabrielson of the US Navy said this mission is about ‘building’ relationships and not about destroying or ‘blowing up’ unlike defence focused mission.

Commenting on the humanitarian relief campaign, he said disasters or challenges we face, had no concern of the boarders, age or how rich people are.

“If challenges come through and you are in the way, then there is an obstacle. We have to come together to face them. That’s when we have to utilize everyone’s energy, skill and service,” he said.

Captain Stanfield Chien, Commander of the Pacific Partnership said though the mission would focus on action to be taken at times of disasters, the mission is more about working together.

“Our teams in collaboration with Sri Lankan counterparts are working hard to make sure the projects are done on time. I invite all to visit these projects and experience them,” he said.

Pacific Partnership is considered as the largest annual multilateral humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Pacific Region.

Once the mission in Sri Lanka was concluded, the Pacific Partnership would move on to its next missions in Myanmar, Malaysia and Vietnam concluding the 2017 programme.

The USNS Fall River, which provides the primary platform to the mission, has been made out of aluminum instead of iron, to maintain a high speed. The ship, which has a permanent crew of 24, hosts approximately 200 personnel during the Pacific Partnership. It has four engines instead of water propellers and had been made with a unique design to ensure its speed. (Lahiru Pothmulla reporting from Hambantota)

  Comments - 4

  • Kumar Thursday, 9 March 2017 05:55

    Good to see the Americans in uniform in our land,we need them and the Indians can't dictate to us any more.Good work by this government.

    Reply : 6       16

    Mohan G. W. Thursday, 9 March 2017 18:32

    Do you know what Iran looked like before Ayatolla Khomeni moved in. Arn't these people trying to meddle in our affaires like they did in Iran, Afganisthan, Irak, Libya last but not the least Vietnam. A blamage whereever they went, because everything was done against the will of the American people. Very sweet termiology "relationship building", We shall see.

    Reply : 1       3

    JAN Thursday, 9 March 2017 10:17

    Yes we welcome DONALD TRUMP Administration but accept only warfare tactics via DM Android App

    Reply : 3       4

    dickie bird Thursday, 9 March 2017 20:31

    holy crap................When the chips are down they will let us down.Trust in the yankees ? My foot...........

    Reply : 0       1

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