MANAMA, Bahrain, –
U.S. forces and members of the Bahrain Defense Force (BDF) participated in exercise Neon Response 19 in Bahrain from 9-14 June 2019.
Neon Response 19 is a bilateral explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) and maritime security exercise between the U.S. Navy and BDF conducted to share knowledge and experiences to enhance mutual capabilities and interoperability.
Members of U.S. 5th Fleet’s Task Force (TF) 56 and TF 55’s U.S. Coast Guard maritime engagement team trained with BDF personnel including the BDF Royal Field Engineer Unit, Royal Bahrain Naval Force (RBNF) and units from the Bahrain Coast Guard.
"Neon Response is a great opportunity for U.S. Naval Forces Central Command forces to work together with BDF in order to strengthen our already excellent relationship,” Lt. j.g. Doug Swezey, TF 56.1 Mobility Platoon Commander said. “We had a great week working with the BDF and RBNF sharing our procedures in EOD, diving and visit, board, search and seizure (VBSS) mission areas. We improved our capabilities and grew stronger together this week."
During the exercise, the units participated and trained in maritime tactics including VBSS; harbor clearance operations; floating mine response; and minefield clearance tactics.
U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations encompasses about 2.5 million square miles of water area and includes the Arabian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, Red Sea and parts of the Indian Ocean. The expanse comprises 20 countries and includes three critical choke points at the Strait of Hormuz, the Suez Canal and the Strait of Bab al Mandeb at the southern tip of Yemen.