The US Naval Forces southern command / US fourth fleet (COMUSNAVSO/C4F) and military personnel from 19 nations have begun the multinational annual exercise Panamax 2013 at the US southern command (SOUTHCOM) headquarters in Miami.
During the drill, the US and allied nations will conduct stability operations under the support of United Nations' security council resolutions and leverage participating nation capability to plan and implement complex multinational operations.
Scheduled to run until 16 August 2013, the Panamax 2013 exercise has been designed to develop and sustain relationships as well as achieve common goals while enhancing friendly cooperation and understanding among participating nations.
US Naval Forces southern command / US fourth fleet commander, rear admiral Sinclair M. Harris, said: "The governments of the countries participating in Panamax share common interests and this exercise enhances those links by fostering friendly, mutual cooperation and understanding between participating militaries."
The US southern command-sponsored drill will see participation from Argentina, Belize, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, France, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay and Peru in addition to the US.
The exercise will also see interoperability training for the participating multinational staff while Harris will act as the commander of multinational forces south.
"This multinational exercise also contributes to interoperability, and builds the capabilities of the participating nations to plan and execute complex multinational operations," Harris added.
COMUSNAVSO/C4F supports the USSOUTHCOM joint and combined full-spectrum military operations to enhance regional security and promote peace and stability in the Caribbean, Central and South American regions.
Image: military personnel during closing ceremony for Panamax 2012 exercise. Photo: courtesy of US Navy.