The U.S. Navy released a statement on Friday saying that U.S. 6th Fleet (C6F) conducted a bilateral naval anti-submarine warfare (ASW) exercise with the U.K., above the Arctic Circle.
The statement noted the four ships from two nations, a U.S. submarine, and a U.S. P8-A worked together, in the Norwegian Sea, to conduct training in the challenging conditions in the Arctic.
For the exercise, Arleigh Burke-class Aegis destroyers USS Donald Cook (DDG 75) and USS Porter (DDG 78), and fast combat support ship USNS Supply (T-AOE 6), were joined by the Royal Navy’s HMS Kent (F 78).
Additionally, a U.S. submarine, as well as a P8-A Poseidon multi-mission maritime patrol and reconnaissance aircraft from Patrol Squadron (VP) 4 supported the training. This exercise reinforces the combined training that the nations received last month while participating in the U.K’s Submarine Command Course (SMCC).
“For more than 70 years, 6th Fleet has operated forces across the region in support of maritime security and stability. Our regional alliances remain strong because of our regular operations and exercises with partner navies, and we welcome this opportunity to work collaboratively at sea, while enhancing our understanding of Arctic operations,” said Vice Adm. Lisa Franchetti, commander, U.S. 6th Fleet.
The multinational antisubmarine exercise in the High North, made up of approximately 1,200 Sailors from the U.S. Navy and Royal Navy, is the latest in a series of U.S. ships operating above the Arctic Circle. In 2018, elements of the USS Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group and the USS Iwo Jima Expeditionary Strike Group operated above the Arctic Circle in support of NATO exercise Trident Juncture. In 2019, the forward-deployed destroyer USS Donald Cook and a SAG from U.S 2nd Fleet led by USS Normandy (CG 60) and USS Farragut (DDG 99) also operated separately above the Arctic Circle.
As Express.co.uk notes, UK forces joined forces with the US to practice operations in the icy waters to ensure the two nations were prepared for future global threats.
The announcement comes just several days after the Russian Armed Forces have displayed his military power in the Arctic by conducting an extraordinary high-altitude airborne training exercise. Its special operators and paratroopers jumped from a height of nearly 33,000 feet in the Arctic region.
A video released by the Russian Defence Ministry showed around 10 Special Forces troops parachuting from a height of 10,000 meters out of an Ilyushin II-76 strategic transport aircraft.