JS Kashima and JS Setoyuki made port calls at Muara Port yesterday as part of the Overseas Training Cruise 2021 by Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force.
Both Japanese naval ships will be in the country for three days and the crew is looking forward to engage with the Royal Brunei Navy via online platform.
Chargé d’Affaires of the Japanese Embassy in Brunei Darussalam Kakuta Hiromi and Second Secretary in charge of defence Sugimoto Kentaro welcomed the arrival of the ships.
A total of 510 Japanese naval personnel, among them 160 newly commissioned officers, are joining the cruise, under the command of Training Squadron Commander Rear Admiral Ishimaki Yoshiyasu.
The Overseas Training Cruise aims to develop the newly commissioned officers’ seamanship through a long-term cruise and various trainings at sea; foster basic knowledge and skills as well as international perspectives; and promote friendly relations with port call countries.
This year commemorates the 65th time the Overseas Training Cruise has embarked on its voyage since its commencement in 1957.
JS Kashima and JS Setoyuki departed Japan on May 26. They will also make port calls in Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Timor-Leste, and the Philippines, before returning home on July 21.
The COVID-19 pandemic situation means face-to-face exchanges will not be conducted. However, Japan and the Sultanate will make the most of this opportunity by holding events such as online lectures by high-level officials from both countries, to allow for the exchange of knowledge. JTS and RBN are also planning a passing exercise (PASSEX) in the South China Sea during the visit to Brunei.
This is the first visit by Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force ships to Brunei since June 2019, during which JS Izumo, JS Murasame and JS Akebono made port calls as part of the Indo-Pacific Deployment 2019.