Following Malabar 2015, a Japanese destroyer and a U.S. carrier are exercising together in the South China Sea.
By Ankit Panda
October 31, 2015
Image Credit: U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Chad M. Trudeau/Released
The Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF) and the U.S. Navy are holding a joint naval exercise in the South China Sea, the Yomiuri Shimbun reports. The exercise marks the first bilateral U.S.-Japan exercise in the area. The drill comes days after the United States staged its first freedom of navigation operation within 12 nautical miles of a Chinese artificial island in the Spratly Islands. The Japanese Defense Ministry has told the Yomiuri that the ongoing South China Sea drill between the two allied navies is “an ordinary drill and unrelated to the U.S. Navy’s patrolling activities there.” The exercise is reportedly not taking place near the Spratly Islands.