U.S. Coast Guard Trains with Indonesia’s Maritime Security Agency
The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Munro conducted operations and exercises with the Indonesian Maritime Security Agency and coast guard, the Badan Keamanan Laut (BAKAMLA). The exercises which were carried out in the Singapore Strait on September 20 are part of an ongoing tour by the cutter which has included training exercises with multiple authorities along the Pacific Coast of Asia.
The Munro, a 418-foot national security cutter, departed its home port of Alameda, California, in July for a months-long deployment to the Western Pacific. Operating under the tactical control of the U.S. Navy's 7th Fleet, the cutter and crew are engaging in professional exchanges and capacity-building exercises with partner nations and patrolling and conducting operations as directed. National security cutters like Munro feature advanced command and control capabilities, aviation support facilities, stern cutter boat launch, and increased endurance for long-range patrols, enabling the crews to disrupt threats to national security further offshore.
Together with the Indonesia agencies, the crews participated in ship-to-ship communications drills, multi-unit maneuvering, and maritime domain awareness while at sea.
“These maritime exercises with our Indonesian partners forge a stronger relationship, allowing our respective crews to work together and build on each other’s strengths,” said Munro’s Commanding Officer Capt. Blake Novak. “Strengthening our alliances and partnerships fosters our unified commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific and promotes peace, security, prosperity, and the sovereign rights of all nations.”
Munro during its training exercises with the Indonesians (US Coast Guard photo)
The U.S. Coast Guard partnership with Indonesia continues to grow stronger. In 2019, the Coast Guard Cutter Stratton conducted engagements with BAKAMLA as part of the Western Pacific deployment, including a port call in Batam and an exercise in the Riau Islands Province. The Stratton also participated in Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training with the Indonesian Navy in 2019.
“The U.S. Coast Guard is proud to operate with the Indonesian Maritime Security Agency and coast guard to enhance capabilities, strengthen maritime governance, security and promote rules-based international order,” said Vice Adm. Michael F. McAllister, commander U.S. Coast Guard Pacific Area. “Strengthening partnerships contributes to the region’s maritime common good in search and rescue, law enforcement, marine environmental response and other areas of mutual interest.”
In late August, as part of the current tour, the Munro accompanied the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Kidd conducting what the U.S. Navy called “routine Taiwan Strait transits,” as part of the exercises in the region. The exercise drew criticism from China which does not recognize the strait as international waters.
The Munro has also conducted a visit to Japan as well as training exercises with the Japan Coast Guard. She also conducted joint exercises in the West Philippine Sea with the Philippine Coast Guard and the Philippine Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources.
US Coast Guard command said that the Munro’s current mission is part of the USCG’s efforts to build close ties across the region and support the U.S.’s allies in the Pacific.