KADENA, Japan -- The U.S. Navy and Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) kicked off their largest bilateral exercise, ANNUALEX, in the Sea of Japan Nov. 11.
ANNUALEX is a bilateral training exercise between the Navy and JMSDF conducted to practice and evaluate interoperability elements required to effectively and cohesively respond to the defense of Japan or to a regional contingency in the Indo-Asia-Pacific.
About 9000 U.S. Sailors are taking part aboard more than 10 ships and submarines, as well as various shore-based aircraft.
Among the shore-based aircraft participating in the event is the P-8A Poseidon, and the “World Famous” Patrol Squadron 45 Pelicans.
“It’s great to be able to participate in such a large-scale bilateral exercise such as this,” said Lieutenant Christopher Cabillo, a VP-45 pilot participating in the event. “These exercises are vital to ensuring interoperability between nations as well as strengthen our maritime defense.”
Patrol Squadron 45, based out of Jacksonville, Florida, are operating out of Kadena Air Force Base in Okinawa, Japan. The squadron is conducting maritime patrol and reconnaissance as well as theater outreach operations within U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations