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Navy conducts antiterrorism drills at Pacific bases

The U.S. Navy began Citadel Pacific 21 exercises on Monday, an annual antiterrorism drill to assess emergency response at bases in Japan, Korea, Hawaii and the Marianas Islands. Photo courtesy of U.S. Navy
The U.S. Navy began "Citadel Pacific 21" exercises on Monday, an annual antiterrorism drill to assess emergency response at bases in Japan, Korea, Hawaii and the Marianas Islands. Photo courtesy of U.S. Navy

July 19 (UPI) -- The U.S. Navy began its "Citadel Pacific 2021" exercises on Monday at its Indo-Pacific installations to assess emergency response and anti-terrorism programs.

The drills take place annually to evaluate command and control capabilities to ensure readiness of antiterrorism programs, the Navy said in a press release.

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Navy Region Japan will conduct the exercise this week, followed by Navy Region Hawaii from Aug. 9 to Aug. 13, Navy Region Korea from Aug. 23 to Aug. 27 and Joint Region Marianas from Oct. 4 to Oct. 8, a Navy statement on Monday said.

The events are led by the Commander, Navy Installations Command, or CNIC, and Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet.

"CP21 simulates realistic threat scenarios such as active shooters, gate runners and improvised explosive devices" said David Foy, Deputy Director of Operations for CNIC.

"Our personnel respond to the incident as they would if it were a real threat. This training approach ensures U.S. Navy security forces maintain a high level of readiness to respond to a dynamic security environment," Foy said.

The Navy statement stressed that the exercises recur regularly, are planned in advance and are not a response to any specific threat.

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Civilian populations near the military installations were advised to expect delays at entry gates and possible unusual activities including smoke, simulated gunfire or explosions.

The exercises follow stateside earthquake response drills, known as Citadel Rumble 2021, at U.S. Navy installations in the Pacific Northwest, an annual exercise testing the capability of Navy facilities to respond to multiple hazards.

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