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Destroyer USS Arleigh Burke joins 6th Fleet at Rota, Spain

The guided missile destroyer USS Arleigh Burke joined the U.S. Navy 6th Fleet at Rota, Spain, its new home port, on Sunday. Photo by MCS1 Eduardo Otero/U.S. Navy
The guided missile destroyer USS Arleigh Burke joined the U.S. Navy 6th Fleet at Rota, Spain, its new home port, on Sunday. Photo by MCS1 Eduardo Otero/U.S. Navy

April 12 (UPI) -- The USS Arleigh Burke, the U.S. Navy's latest Forward Deployed U.S. Naval Forces-Europe destroyer, has arrived in its new home port ib Rota, Spain, the branch announced on Monday.

The vessel, which departed Naval Station Norfolk, Va., in March for its new home port, arrived there on Sunday, the branch said in a press release.

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The ship, commissioned in 1991 as the first of its class, carries the AEGIS Weapons System and the latest AEGIS Baseline 9 upgrades, armaments the Navy called "effective anti-air, anti-submarine, anti-surface and strike operations in high-threat environments."

At Rota, it will be one of four Forward Deployed Naval Forces ships serving with the Sixth Fleet, joining the USS Ross, the USS Roosevelt and the USS Porter, the Navy said in March when it announced the Arleigh Burke had left for deployment.

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The Sixth Fleet's operations extend to waters surrounding Europe and Africa.

"As one of the most technologically advanced destroyers in the entire United States Navy, we are excited to provide additional capability to Sixth Fleet operations," Cmdr. Patrick Chapman, commanding officer of the USS Arleigh Burke, said at the time.

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Prior to deployment, the USS Arleigh Burke was one of five ships involved in a month-long Composite Training Unit Exercise, or COMPUTEX, of the Iwo Jima Amphibious Ready Group and the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit.

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The exercise was designed "to fully integrate a strike group as a cohesive, multi-mission fighting force, and test the group's ability to carry out sustained combat operations from the sea," the Navy said.

The Arleigh Burke will replace the USS Donald Cook at Rota, which will also have a new home port at Naval Station Mayport, Fla.

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