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U.S. Navy prepares for two-week Citadel Shield-Solid Curtain security exercise

An FBI SWAT team provides integrated training assistance during the 2015 iteration of Solid Curtain-Citadel Shield at Naval Station Norfolk. Va. Photo by MCS2 Justan Williams/U.S. Navy
An FBI SWAT team provides integrated training assistance during the 2015 iteration of Solid Curtain-Citadel Shield at Naval Station Norfolk. Va. Photo by MCS2 Justan Williams/U.S. Navy

Jan. 25 (UPI) -- The U.S. Navy announced preparations for its nationwide security exercises known as Citadel Shield-Solid Curtain on Monday.

The annual exercise will occur from Feb. 1 to Feb. 12, involving installations across the country's 11 Naval Districts, in drills and training to cover a range of security situations.

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The event is meant to ensure that the Navy is prepared to respond to security and terrorism threats is the event's stated mission, including in Washington, D.C.

"I think we continually are improving our ability to test our forces within the ever changing threat environment we are in," Sean Sullivan of Naval District Washington, which covers the Capitol area, said in a statement on Monday.

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"We are always looking to improve and regional leadership has been fully supportive in allowing us the ability to find new ways to ensure we are combating both current and potential future threats to our installations," Sullivan said.

The first week of events, Citadel Shield, is led by the Navy Installations Command with the second week, Solid Curtain, run by the U.S. Fleet Forces Command.

"Everybody comes together for Citadel Shield and Solid Curtain to test their plans," added Sullivan. "The installations want to get as much value out of this exercise as possible.

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"We appreciate everyone's cooperation and when we get through the first two weeks of February, I'm sure we will see how valuable it was," Sullivan said.

A statement from Seal Beach Naval Weapons Station, Calif., on Saturday noted the possibility of increased traffic and temporary gate closures at the installation during the exercises.

It added that the drills are not a reaction to a specific threat, but a regularly scheduled exercise.

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Navy policy precludes announcement of the exercises' specific measures.

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