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News | Sept. 24, 2020

4th Fleet Commander Hosts Maritime Staff Talks With Peruvian Navy

By U.S. Fourth Fleet Public Affairs Office

Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. 4th Fleet, Rear Adm. Don Gabrielson, hosted leaders from the Peruvian Navy (Marina de Guerra del Peru) for the annual U.S. - Peru Maritime Staff Talks (MST) Sept. 23.

MSTs support U.S. global strategy by building and strengthening working relationships between the U.S. and partner nations and improving interoperability through face-to-face meetings. Due to COVID-19, this year’s MST occurred virtually via the All Partner Access Network (APAN) and the Combined Enterprise Regional Information Exchange System (CENTRIXS).

Representatives from the Peruvian Navy, U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps and the U.S. Coast Guard participated in the event.

Rear Admiral Don Gabrielson, Commander U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. FOURTH Fleet, led the U.S. delegation along with Brigadier General Phillip Frietze, Commander U.S. Marine Corps Forces South, and Rear Admiral Brian Penoyer, U.S. Coast Guard District Eleven. Rear Admiral Rodolfo Sablich, Deputy, Navy General Staff, Rear Admiral Jose Antonio Regalado, Commander of the Marine Corps Force, Rear Admiral Jorge Martín Zegarra, Naval Attaché in Washington D.C. and Rear Admiral Werner Meier Von Schierenbeck, Commander of Coast Guard Operations, led the Peruvian delegation.

“The relationship that we are establishing today is with great expectation, will provide us a great opportunity to establish a new chapter in our relationship through the agreements for the benefit of both navies in the framework of our worldwide operations,” said Sablich.

MST topics included discussion of the UNITAS LXII (62) multinational maritime exercise, which will occur in September 2021.  Peru will host UNITAS LXII next year to celebrate the bicentennial of the Peruvian navy.  The two delegations also made initial preparations for the Silent Forces Exercise (SIFOREX), a biennial, bilateral anti-submarine warfare (ASW) exercise hosted by the Peruvian Navy.  As with every MST this year, the U.S. and Peruvian delegation shared health crisis management lessons learned from each country’s respective experiences during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The United States and Peru have enjoyed a close relationship at sea since 1920, when the U.S. naval mission to Peru began.  Our current range of topics and the ease of discussion underscore a mature, special friendship, with subjects covering the spectrum of naval operations.  We especially appreciate learning from the Peruvian Navy’s experience during the pandemic. It’s inspiring hearing their personal and professional stories of leadership and service.  We have much to look forward to in 2021, especially helping Peru celebrate their navy’s two hundredth anniversary.” said Gabrielson

U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. 4th Fleet supports U.S. Southern Command’s joint and combined military operations by employing maritime forces in cooperative maritime security operations to maintain access, enhance interoperability, and build enduring partnerships in order to enhance regional security and promote peace, stability and prosperity in the Caribbean, Central and South American region. For more news from U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command & U.S. 4th Fleet, visit

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