Military News

Saturday, November 07, 2015

Experts Gather in Seoul for Second Annual MCM Symposium



By Commander, Naval Forces Korea, Public Affairs

Nov. 05, 2015 (NNS) -- Representatives from eight United Nations Command (UNC) Sending States (SS) joined mine warfare experts from the U.S. and Republic of Korea (ROK), for a week-long mine countermeasures symposium, Nov. 2-6.

The second annual UNC SS Naval Component Commander MCM symposium, hosted by Commander, Naval Forces Korea (CNFK), was designed to exchange expertise and enhance coordination and training in critical mine countermeasures capabilities.

"This symposium was very important," said ROK Rear Adm. Park, Ki-khung, the commander of Flotilla Five. "It allowed us to share mine warfare information and tactics among our sending state partners who share our commitment to defend and support the Korean peninsula."

The symposium featured presentations by representatives from Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Thailand as well as ROK and U.S., and provided a valuable opportunity to increase readiness in mine countermeasure proficiency at sea.

"Every nation represented here today shares a proud history of service and sacrifice in protecting and defending the Republic of Korea and ensuring a stable environment that has enabled South Korea to emerge as one of the economic and cultural leaders of the world," said Rear Adm. Bill Byrne, commander of CNFK.

The week-long staff talks also included cultural education visits to the ROK Second Fleet to see the ROK ship Cheonan and a visit to the De-Militarized Zone.

"The enduring threat of mines at sea is what brought all of us here this week," said Byrne. "It is my hope that that each nation represented here used this venue to share their expertise and offer their ideas about how we can enhance our mine warfare partnership among the United Nations Command Sending States."

CNFK is the United Nations Naval Component Commander during Armistice and the U.S. and UNC Sending States navies routinely plan, exchange information, train and operate together to strengthen coordination and improve combined capabilities.

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