Bangkok, Thailand (Feb. 11, 2010) – The U.S. Embassy in Bankok reports that U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission James Entwistle joined Deputy Chief of Defense Forces General Kittipong Keskowit, and representatives from the embassies of Japan, Singapore, Indonesia and Republic of Korea for the Cobra Gold 2010 (CG10) closing ceremony at the Royal Thai Army Training Area, Moungkom, Lop Buri on February 11.This was the 29th annual Cobra Gold exercise and is the latest in a continuing series of exercises designed to promote regional peace and security. More than 6,000 U.S. military personnel participated in this year’s event.
“This year’s Cobra Gold provided an opportunity not only to enhance U.S.-Thai relations, but also strengthened our bonds of friendship with other countries in the region,” Entwistle. “…Significantly, Cobra Gold 2010 marks the first year that the Republic of Korea has joined as a full partner.
Entwistle said the Embassy appreciates Korea’s enthusiastic participation, and the Korean soldiers’ involvement has not only enhanced the multilateral aspects of Cobra Gold, but also further demonstrates the impact this exercise can have on regional stability.
“Cobra Gold also improves our joint abilities in humanitarian assistance and disaster relief efforts, the importance of which is glaringly obvious this year after the devastating earthquake in Haiti,” he added. “It is important that our militaries learn to work with each other and rehearse for the day their services may be needed to answer the call for help.
Entwistle said that is is also imperative that U.S. militaries work well with civilian counterparts during humanitarian crises, and that this work that type of work performed during the exercise would help to save lives in future operations, peacekeeping deployments, and disaster responses.
Cobra Gold 2010 was conducted from February 1-11, 2010. Cobra Gold focuses on maintaining and improving military-to-military relationships among the United States, Thailand, Singapore, Japan, Republic of Korea, and Indonesia. U.S. military personnel also conducted five engineering construction projects and seven medical civic action projects in villages of Kanchanaburi, Ratchaburi, Phetchaburi, and Chanthaburi.