Multinational military training exercise Cobra Gold 2017 begins in Thailand
The US and Thailand have commenced the 36th iteration of their annual multinational military training exercise, Cobra Gold 2017.
Supported by US Pacific Command, the exercise is designed to advance regional security by exercising a multinational force from nations sharing common goals and security commitments in the Asia-Pacific region.
Taking place in Thailand, Cobra Gold 2017 is said to be the largest theatre security cooperation exercise in Asia.
The ten-day exercise will involve a staff exercise with a senior leader seminar, a field training exercise, and humanitarian civic assistance projects.
US Navy Admiral Harry B. Harris Jr. said: "This high-level participation demonstrates a growing commitment to do the hard work and increase interoperability among our militaries now so that we know what works when crisis strikes.”
The exercise will witness participation from almost 30 nations, including Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore and South Korea.
Nearly 3,600 US soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines will conduct shore and afloat training during the exercise, which will run until 24 February.
Participants will also take part in an amphibious assault demonstration, non-combatant evacuation operations, and combined arms live-fire exercises to strengthen regional partnerships and improve combat-readiness.
Harris further added: "This exercise will test us in realistic and complex ways.
"Earnest collaboration with open minds throughout our entire time together will allow us to learn with each other and from each other."
Image: Cobra Gold 17 seeks to expand regional cooperation and collaboration for humanitarian and disaster relief operations. Photo: courtesy of US Marine Corps photo by Staff Sgt. Nathan O. Sotelo.