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Press Release | Sept. 28, 2012

International Militaries Conclude Mine Countermeasures Exercise

By Oscar Seara , CENTCOM Public Affairs

TAMPA, Florida (September 27, 2012) — Militaries from more than 30 nations yesterday concluded the International Mine Countermeasures Exercise 2012 (IMCMEX 12) in closing ceremonies at U.S. Naval Forces Central Command headquarters, Manama, Bahrain. The ceremonies marked the achievements of the multinational  exercise – the largest of its kind in the region – bringing together approximately 3,000 personnel from 33 countries in exercise activities spanning twelve days and 1,000 miles in the region, and combining existing and new capabilities.

IMCMEX 12 successfully demonstrated the will of the international community to preserve freedom of navigation in the region, with exercise operating activities led by separate nations in three of the region’s strategic waterways: the Persian Gulf, the Gulf of Oman and the Gulf of Aden. IMCMEX 12 proved the ability to conduct command and control multiple capabilities, including ships, unmanned underwater vehicles, helicopters, dive and EOD (explosive ordinance disposal) teams in the three operating areas; it expanded the capabilities of the afloat staging base concept and explored emerging technologies of unmanned underwater vehicles.

During the two-week exercise, participants attended a three-day symposium, followed by afloat exercises to develop and refine international mine countermeasures (MCM) operations in multiple locations across the region.

The symposium focused on the international mine countermeasures (MCM) environment and issues, alongside industry displays of the latest MCM technologies. The afloat phase focused on MCM command-and-control and MCM support activities; intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance support; maritime security operations; visit, board, search and seizure (VSSB) events; maritime critical infrastructure protection, explosive ordnance disposal; maritime domain awareness and force protection.

Exercises like IMCMEX 12 expand levels of cooperation, enhance mutual maritime capabilities and promote long-term regional stability and interoperability between U.S. and international partners, while better preparing the international community to address disruptions to freedom of navigation and international commerce. IMCMEX 12 is intended to be the first of a recurring series of similar exercises.

Questions about the exercise may be directed to USNAVCENT Public Affairs at 973-1785-4562 or via email at  More information and photos from the exercise can be found on the USNAVCENT website, at