Pacific Partnership 2018 arrives in Sri Lanka

The humanitarian aid and disaster response exercise Pacific Partnership 2018 arrived in Sri Lanka on April 25.

US and partner nation service members participating in the exercise arrived in Trincomalee, Sri Lanka, aboard the US Navy hospital ship USNS Mercy (T-AH 19).

The mission in Trincomalee will continue through May 8 and will feature Pacific Partnership doctors and medical personnel working side-by-side with Sri Lankan medical professionals to exchange best practices. Additionally, US and partner nation service members will join their Sri Lankan counterparts in civil engineering projects, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HA/DR) readiness seminars, and public outreach engagements throughout the local community.

“I am very excited to see our team working with side-by-side with the people of Sri Lanka,” said Capt. David Bretz, the mission commander for Pacific Partnership 2018. “Through Pacific Partnership, we are building bonds of trust, friendship, and partnership with the Sri Lankan people that will help us prepare together for a multitude of contingencies that our nations face with manmade and natural disasters. We are honored to be guests in this country and work beside our Sri Lankan counterparts.”

Pacific Partnership is the largest annual multilateral disaster response preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Pacific. This year’s mission includes military and civilian personnel from the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, France, Peru, and Japan.

USNS Mercy made previous stops in the 2018 mission in Bengkulu, Indonesia and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. After departing Sri Lanka, USNS Mercy will make mission stops in Vietnam and Japan.