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U.S. amphibious unit off Middle East

Oct. 30, 2012 at 1:08 PM

WASHINGTON, Oct. 30 (UPI) -- A U.S. Marine amphibious unit has reported for duty in the Persian Gulf area, the Corps announced Tuesday.

The 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit sailed into the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations, which includes the Persian Gulf, the overall Middle East and eastern Africa.

The 15th MEU has about 2,400 troops aboard three transport ships, including the amphibious assault ship USS Peleilu. They will take part in routine exercises with allied nations during their stay and otherwise be on call to respond to any crisis in the area that might call for U.S. troops, the Marine Corps said in a written statement.

The force set sail from San Diego last month and took part in amphibious exercises off Timor before reporting to the Indian Ocean.

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