The U.S. Coast Guard conducted its first joint exercise with Indonesia’s Maritime Security Agency and Coast Guard, the Badan Keamanan Laut [known as BAKAMLA], August 9-11, 2019, in Batam, Riau Islands Province, Indonesia.
In celebration of the inaugural USCG-BAKAMLA training exercise and to commemorate 70 years of diplomatic relations with Indonesia, the U.S. Embassy and U.S. Consulate Medan, together with the U.S. Coast Guard, hosted a reception aboard the USCG Cutter Stratton for BAKAMLA personnel, government officials, and dignitaries. USCG Stratton Commanding Officer Bob Little welcomed the guests, underlining the importance of joint cooperation with our partners. Newly-arrived U.S. Consul for Sumatra Guy Margalith addressed the crowd, highlighting the successful U.S.-Indonesia partnership.
The joint exercise demonstrates the increasingly robust ties the United States shares with Indonesia and reinforces the U.S. commitment to strengthening relations between coast guard institutions. The engagement showcased U.S. support for BAKAMLA as Indonesia’s Maritime Security Agency with responsibility for Indonesia’s maritime safety, maritime security and law enforcement, and maritime defense.
The exercise focused on capacity building, information sharing, and inter-coast guard communication. The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Stratton, with 150 crewmembers, engaged in a subject matter experts’ exchange (SMEE) and table-top exercise with BAKAMLA members on August 10 and conducted a boarding exercise and search techniques training with BAKAMLA’s off-shore patrol vessel KN Tanjung Datu on August 11.
The Stratton, a 418-foot national security cutter commissioned in 2012, departed its homeport of Alameda, California, on June 12 for a months-long deployment to the Western Pacific. It is the second U.S. Coast Guard cutter deployed to the Western Pacific in 2019.