U.S., British and Spanish Marines embarked aboard Military Sealift Command joint, high-speed vessel USNS Spearhead conducted a full schedule of weapons and tactics training alongside Angolan military personnel as part of Africa Partnership Station 2015 in the port of Luanda, Angola, March 2-7.
Additionally, Spearhead hosted several engagements aboard the ship including an embassy function attended by the U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Angola, Helen Meagher La Lime.
“The Spearhead’s embarked Marine detachment consisting of U.S., British and Spanish Marines was exemplary in building relationships with the Angolan military forces. It is these types of engagements that form the foundation that Africa Partnership Station is built upon.”
– Navy Cmdr. Matthew Flemming, Africa Partnership station 2015 mission commander
“I wish we had more time with our fellow Angolan Marines. They have been very good hosts and our time with each other has increased both of our teams’ capacity.”
– 1st Lt. Scott Mahaffey, USMC
“I am impressed with the Angolan’s skill levels. Future engagements will build both of our team’s standards.”
– Lt. Warren Rowe, British Royal Marines
“This has been a great opportunity to work alongside the Angolans. They have very good skills and we enjoyed our engagements with them.”
– Capt. Amado Audreu, Spanish marines
- Spearhead provided the venue for an Obangame Express 2015 exercise brief. Representatives from the Angolan navy, foreign militaries, oil company security managers, the Angolan media and the U.S. ambassador attended the brief, which outlined the upcoming multinational exercise.
- Spearhead Sailors participated in a friendly soccer match with Angolan military personnel and went on a tour of Luanda, organized and hosted by the Angolan military.
- Spearhead will continue supporting Africa Partnership Station 2015 for the duration of its scheduled time in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations.
- Africa Partnership Station is the mechanism by which international maritime forces share professional skills, knowledge and experience to enhance collective efforts to combat sea-borne illicit activity.
- Spearhead, a 338-foot-long aluminum catamaran with a 20,000 square-foot mission bay area, can be reconfigured to allow it to adapt to a wide-range of operations and missions. Potential missions include carrying containerized portable hospitals for disaster relief to transporting tanks and troops.
- Spearhead is on a scheduled deployment to the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations to support the international collaborative capacity-building program Africa Partnership Station.
- U.S. 6th Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied, joint, and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.
From U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa/U.S. 6th Fleet Public Affairs