Exercise Cutlass Express
Host Location: East Africa Littorals
Summary: Exercise Cutlass Express is an exercise sponsored by US Africa Command (AFRICOM), and focuses on addressing piracy through information sharing and coordinated operations among international navies. Exercise Cutlass Express represents a US commitment to regional stability and maritime security, with participating nations including Djibouti, Mauritius, Mozambique, Tanzania, The Seychelles, Uganda, and the United States. In the 2012 iteration of the exercise, the Dutch ship HNLMS Rotterdam, flagship of NATO Task Force 508, also participated.
Cultass Express, which began in 2011, was part of the larger Express Series exercises and was designed to advance East African maritime relationships and address mutual security issues, as well as test skills obtained from participating in bilateral and Africa Partnership Station initiative. Annual Cutlass Express engagements could occur in various locations Indian Ocean and Gulf of Aden, sometimes concurrently. Exercises were coordinated with shore-based operations centers as well and could also include ashore events such as conferences. The ashore and at sea portions of the exercise were sometimes referred to separate by the use of a further numerical designation, such as Cutlass Express 2012-2 for the at sea portion of the 2012 exercise.
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