US Navy ship USNS Fall River in town for Pacific Partnership Exercise

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By Nancy Nais

KUCHING, March 28: The USNS Fall River, a Spearhead-class expeditionary fast transport ship from the United States of America, has arrived here for the Pacific Partnership Exercise 2019.

The exercise is a collaboration between the Malaysian armed forces and the US Army. It is scheduled from March 30 to April 12.

Sarawak was chosen as the venue for the second time after USNS Fall River’s first visit in 2017.

The ship, carrying about 100 army personnel and led by Capt. Brendon Zilkoled, arrived at Pending Port around 9am.

They were greeted by Head of Division 1 Infantry Division of Malaysia Col. Nadzri Che Lah, PP19 executive director Col. Sr Mohamed Zaki Mohamed Mokhtar and J7 (Training) Headquarters director Col. Zulfakar Abdul Wahid.

An annual scheduled exercise is usually held between the Malaysian armed forces, the United States, Australia, the Philippines, Japan, Peru, Thailand and the United Kingdom.

According to public relations officer Mohd Hafiz Mohamed Sabilan, the crew would take part in engineering, medical and dental civic action programs over the next 15 days.

The programme, which is based on humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, has indirectly brought closer ties between society and military organisations.

The official launch for the Pacific Partnership Exercise 2019 is scheduled for March 30. — DayakDaily