The Korea Herald


S. Korea's Navy fleet to leave for Hawaii to join biennial RIMPAC exercise

By Yonhap

Published : June 7, 2024 - 10:41

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ROKS Yulgok Yi I destroyer (South Korean Navy) ROKS Yulgok Yi I destroyer (South Korean Navy)

A South Korean fleet of warships and maritime aircraft and around 840 Navy and Marine troops were set to depart for Hawaii on Friday to join a US-led multinational maritime exercise slated to kick off later this month, the Navy said.

The fleet will leave a naval base on the southern resort island of Jeju on Friday afternoon to join the biennial Rim of the Pacific Exercise scheduled to run from June 26 through Aug. 2, according to the Navy.

The Korean fleet comprises naval ships including the 7,600-ton ROKS Yulgok Yi I Aegis-equipped destroyer, the 1,800-ton ROKS Lee Beom-seok submarine, a P-3 maritime surveillance aircraft, a Lynx helicopter and six Korean Assault Amphibious Vehicles.

It will be South Korea's 18th participation in the drills, where some 40 vessels, three submarines, 150 aircraft and some 25,000 personnel from 29 countries, including the US, Japan and Australia, will also take part.

This year, the South Korean contingent will take on the role of deputy commander for the first time to assist the commander in operating the multinational naval force, the Navy said.

It will also participate in various drills, such as special warfare operations and disaster response and rescue operations, aimed at enhancing interoperational capabilities with the combined forces.

Launched in 1971, the RIMPAC exercise is designed to enhance cooperation among participating countries in securing sea lines of communication and countering potential security challenges at sea. (Yonhap)