CARAT exercise objectives achieved despite challenges

The 26th Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) bilateral exercise between the Royal Brunei Armed Forces (RBAF) and the United States Navy (USN) is of high significance in enhancing the long existing bilateral relations between both armed forces.

This was highlighted by RBAF Joint Force Commander Brigadier General Haji Abdul Razak bin Haji Abdul Kadir in a pre-recorded remark during the closing ceremony of the exercise yesterday.

The closing ceremony of CARAT exercise was co-chaired virtually by Deputy Joint Force Commander, Joint Force Headquarters of the RBAF Colonel Haji Norhazalan bin Abdullah, and Commodore, Commander of Destroyer Squadron 7 (COMDESRON SEVEN) Captain Ann McCann, USN.

A pre-recorded remark by Commander of Joint Task Force SEVEN SIX Rear Admiral Fred W Kacher, USN, were also aired during the ceremony.

Brigadier General Haji Abdul Razak expressed his satisfaction that the objectives of CARAT exercise were achieved despite challenges posed by the current global pandemic.

Deputy Joint Force Commander, Joint Force Headquarters of the RBAF Colonel Haji Norhazalan bin Abdullah, other officers and participants during the virtual closing ceremony of 26th CARAT exercise. PHOTO: RBAF

The success of the 26th CARAT exercise served to further enhance defence relations between both countries and strengthen cooperation in the areas of mutual interest such as sharing of best practices, knowledge and experiences among the participants, while adhering to the Ministry of Health pandemic mitigation guidelines.

Among the joint activities conducted in conjunction with the 26th CARAT 2020 were shore and sea phase trainings, online seminar presentations by Subject Matter Expert Exchange (SMEE) from RBAF and USN including online discussions on medical symposium, women’s interaction programme, senior enlisted engagement, military law symposium, and public affairs webinar.

CARAT exercise will continue to be conducted annually. It is hoped that next year’s exercise will be conducted physically.