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Wednesday, June 01, 2005

U.S. & Singapore do some joint anti-terror training

The US Navy and Singapore are doing 2 weeks of joint training as reported here, with SecDef Rumsfeld due in the area to discuss "security":
More than 1,500 U.S. and Singapore troops, aircraft, a submarine and 12 ships are taking part in the two-week Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training, or CARAT, in the South China Sea.

Washington fears that al-Qaida linked militants could launch a terror strike in the nearby Malacca Strait, which borders Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia, and is plied by 50,000 commercial ships a year.

More than half the world's oil and a third of its commerce pass through the 900-kilometer (550-mile) strait. A bombing could paralyze its sea traffic for months.

Much of the CARAT exercise will involve training to prevent maritime terror strikes _ such as the seizure of vessels and attacks by small boats, a tactic used by al-Qaida in the past.
The US Navy's Logistics Group Western Pacific, based in Singapore, is a key player.

(Hat tip: The Counterterrorism Blog)

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