By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Ernesto Bonilla
| January 28, 2018
Royal Saudi Naval Forces (RSNF) and U.S. Navy explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) technicians wrapped up a week of advanced training during underwater mine countermeasures (MCM) exercise Indigo Response 18, Jan. 25.
The bilateral exchange began Jan. 21, and featured sailors from Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit (EODMU) 2 assigned to Task Group (TG) 56.1. The exercise included; EOD operational mission planning; diving emergency response; scuba diving operations, underwater MCM tactics, techniques and procedures; underwater search tactics, techniques and procedures; robotic/unmanned underwater vehicle employment tactics, techniques and procedures; underwater demolition operations and underwater MCM surface demolition operations.
“Our goal was to focus on increasing tactical proficiency,” said Lt. j.g. Mike Peribonio, officer-in-charge of EODMU 2, Platoon 202. “Indigo Response is an excellent opportunity for the U.S. Navy and RSNF to focus on increasing defensive proficiency in critical mission areas while supporting long term regional stability and freedom of navigation.”
Indigo Response 18 concluded Jan. 25, with a day of cultural exchanges that included a gift exchanges, soccer match, and a barbeque.
“It’s been a good opportunity working with the Royal Saudi Naval Forces,” Peribonio said. “The exercise was a great success. It has given us the opportunity to get to know them as individuals and to understand how they operate so we can better integrate their efforts with ours in the future.”
Indigo Response 18 is a bilateral underwater MCM engagement between the U.S. Navy and Royal Saudi Naval Forces. The exercise presents a venue to strengthen combine capabilities in underwater MCM and air diving operations, enhancing mutual maritime capabilities and ensuring the freedom of navigation throughout the region.