By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Austin G. Collins, USS Roosevelt Public Affairs
The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Roosevelt (DDG 80) executed a passing exercise (PASSEX) with Bulgarian naval counterparts in the Black Sea, Sept. 20, 2020.
Roosevelt conducted the bilateral exercise off the coast of Varna, Bulgaria, with Bulgarian Navy Koni-class frigates BGS Smeli (F-11) and BGS Bodri (F-13).
“This weekend marks 117 years of diplomatic relations between the United States and Bulgaria,” said Cmdr. Ryan Kendall, Roosevelt's commanding officer. “Roosevelt feels privileged to continue strengthening this relationship through a passing exercise with BGS Smeli and BGS Bodri."
The U.S. and Bulgarian naval forces that participated in the drill showed seasoned tactical preparation. The force also demonstrated excellent joint interactions and a unified sense of collaboration. U.S. Navy vessels routinely conduct training with allies and partners in order to increase capacity and capability as they work together to strengthen regional ties.
"This exercise enables our forces to refine our maritime coordination skills and build relationships,” said Kendall.
Roosevelt, forward-deployed to Rota, Spain, is conducting naval operations in the U.S. Sixth Fleet area of operations in support of U.S. national and NATO security interests in Europe and Africa.
U.S. Sixth Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.