US destroyer USS Jason Dunham works with Egyptian Navy

US Navy guided-missile destroyer USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109) met up with the Egyptian Navy frigate El Zafer (F951) for a passing exercise (PASSEX) in the US 5th Fleet area of operations.

Egyptian navy frigate El Zafer (F951), bottom, steams alongside the guided-missile destroyer USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109) during a passing exercise on July 1, 2018. Photo: US Navy

PASSEX is an exercise in which multiple ships, operating in close vicinity, practice evolutions together to improve crews’ knowledge, navigation and familiarity with operability.

“This was another great opportunity to work with the Egyptian Navy and continue to build, foster and solidify rapport with a maritime-military nation who shares a lot of the same interests in this area of operations,” said Cmdr. John Hamilton, Dunham’s commanding officer.

The PASSEX started with Dunham and El Zafer performing divisional tactics and maneuvers.

The exercise concluded with a gunnery exercise. A floating smoke target was dropped for the ships to fire upon, and Dunham shot five rounds from the ship’s 5-inch gun, followed by 20 rounds from El Zafer’s 37mm machine gun.

Dunham is deployed to the US 5th Fleet area of operations in support of naval operations to ensure maritime stability and security in the Central region, connecting the Mediterranean and the Pacific through the western Indian Ocean and three strategic choke points.