Ambassador Blake’s Travel to Padang, West Sumatra

Ambassador Blake’s Travel to Padang, West Sumatra (State Dept.)

Traveling to Padang on April 12, Ambassador Blake and Pacific Fleet Commander Admiral Scott H. Swift attended the fleet review and opening of Operation Komodo, a multinational military exercise held every two years. One of the newer US destroyers, the USS Stockdale (2008), joined the exercise, along with a brand new and highly sophisticated P-8 Poseidon patrol aircraft. President Jokowi was present for the fleet review along with numerous Indonesian officials who highlighted the exercise theme of humanitarian assistance, disaster response, and maritime resource protection. Following the fleet review, Ambassador Blake and Logistics Group Western Pacific Commander Rear Admiral Williams led national media outlets on a press flight aboard the P-8. While airborne, in their remarks Ambassador Blake and Admiral stressed the strength of U.S.-Indonesia defence cooperation that makes the U.S. Indonesia’s top defence partner in joint exercises and other engagements. The official exercise begins April 14 concurrent with the 25 nation Western Pacific Naval Symposium.