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RIMPAC 2010 begins in Hawaii

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Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Oyashio-class submarine J.S. Mochishio (SS 600) arrives at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam to support Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercises. Photo: US Navy.

PEARL HARBOR (BNS): The world's largest multinational maritime exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2010 exercise was officially kicked off on Wednesday in the waters around the Hawaiian Islands.

The biennial exercise has started on June 23 and will continue till August 1, 2010. Around 14 nations, 32 ships, five submarines, more than 170 aircraft and 20,000 personnel has arrived in Hawaii for this exercise.

The 22nd RIMPAC 2010 is themed on “Combined Agility, Synergy and Support” and it is divided in three major phases.

Phase I, or ‘Harbor Phase’, will start from June 28 through July 5. During this phase operational planning meetings, safety briefings and sporting events will take place. This phase is designed to make final preparations for the at-sea phases of the exercises, as well as build on professional and personal relationships between the participating countries.

Phase II, or the ‘Operational Phase’, will start on July 6 and will continue through July 24. It will focus on the structured schedule of events. This portion includes live fire gunnery and missile exercises, maritime interdiction and vessel boarding’s, anti-surface warfare, undersea warfare, naval manoeuvres, air defence exercises, as well as explosive ordnance disposal, diving and salvage operations, mine clearance operations and an amphibious landing.

During this phase, the nations will enhance their ability to conduct robust command and control operations with multinational players and augment each unit's operational capabilities.

Phase III, or the ‘Tactical Phase’ of the exercise, will take place from July 25 through July 30. The intense training during this phase will allow the participating nations to further strengthen their maritime skills and capabilities and improve their ability to communicate and operate in simulated hostile scenarios.

This phase concludes with the ships' return to Pearl Harbor, where participating nations will reconvene to discuss the exercise and overall accomplishments.

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