United States, Canada, 20 Caribbean & Central/South American Nations Gather in Antigua and Barbuda for Tradewinds 2011

Marines, coast guard, law enforcement and ground forces from the United States and 21 partner nations will meet in Antigua and Barbuda on March 2 to participate in Tradewinds 2011, a joint exercise intended to improve cooperation and interoperability between partner nations in responding to regional security threats.

{FILE IMAGE, Wildey - Bridgetown Embassy} Media are invited to attend any aspect of the exercise. For more information, please contact 2nd Lt. Dominic Pitrone at 504-678-0052, 440-479-6641 or dominic.pitrone@usmc.mil

Tradewinds 2011 is a joint-combined, interagency exercise and will involve U.S. personnel from the Marine Corps, Coast Guard, Army, Navy, Air Force, National Guard, Joint Interagency Task Force-South, Naval Criminal Investigative Service and the Federal Bureau of Investigation along with forces from 21 partner nations: Antigua-Barbuda (host nation), Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Canada, Colombia, Dominica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Nicaragua, Panama, St. Kitts-Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, Suriname, and Trinidad-Tobago.

The exercise is directed by the Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs, and sponsored by the U.S. Southern Command. It is conducted annually in cooperation with Caribbean Basin, Central and South American partner nations.

{FILE IMAGE - RSS Closing Ceremony, precursor to Regional exercises} Tradewinds 2011 will focus on regional defense, Peace Keeping Operations and Counter Illicit Trafficking Operations through law enforcement, basic infantry and maritime operations training tracks.

The goal of Tradewinds 2011 is to increase cooperation among Caribbean Community, Regional Security Service and other partner nations. This exercise will improve operational center management, basic infantry skills, law enforcement tactics, techniques and procedures, Search and Rescue, Maritime Interdiction Operations and maritime operating procedures.” said Maj. Eric Dominijanni, exercise coordinator with the U.S. Marine Corps Forces South. “The U.S. and the Caribbean share common interests, and regional challenges require cooperative solutions. We are committed to building lasting partnerships that will enhance our ability to work effectively together.”

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