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Press Release | March 12, 2024

Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf completes joint Malacca Strait transit, engagements with Republic of Singapore Navy, Singapore Police Coast Guard and Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency

SINGAPORE – U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf (WMSL 750) departed Singapore on February 28, following a four day port call to conduct capacity building engagements with like-minded partners during a Western Pacific deployment.

During the port call, the crew of the Bertholf participated in multiple professional engagements and training exercises with members of the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN), Singapore Police Coast Guard (PCG), and Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA).

These engagements provided opportunities to learn from partner nations, deepen partnerships through dialogue, and demonstrate the United States’ commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific.

After departing, Bertholf’s crew conducted at-sea exercises and subject matter expert exchanges with the RSN, PCG and MMEA, to include a group sail through the Malacca Strait.

Bertholf crew and the RSN Maritime and Security Response Vessel (MSRV) Guardian conducted a boarding exercises, maneuvering drills, and communication exercises in international waters in the southern reaches of the South China Sea.

During the at-sea engagements, Bertholf embarked members of the RSN, Singapore PCG and MMEA ship riders to observe Bertholf’s operations.

“The crew of Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf is proud to work with the Republic of Singapore Navy the Singapore Police Coast Guard and Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency - trusted partners here in Southeast Asia,” said U.S. Coast Guard Capt. Billy Mees, commanding officer of the Bertholf. “Over the past few days, we have strengthened these bonds with a range of professional and at-sea engagements, including having several shipriders accompany the Bertholf during our transit through the Malacca Strait. These events reinforce our partnerships and allow us to collaborate on best practices.”

Bertholf operates in support of United States Indo-Pacific Command, which oversees military operations in the region.

Operating under the tactical control of Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet, the cutter crew conducts capacity building and subject matter expert exchanges with regional partners and allies during their Western Pacific deployments.

The U.S. Coast Guard has a 150-year enduring role in the Indo-Pacific. The Service’s ongoing deployment of resources to the region supports U.S. foreign policy and national security objectives as part of the Indo-Pacific Strategy and the National Security Strategy.

Since 2019, Coast Guard Cutters Bertholf (WMSL 750), Midgett (WMSL 757), Stratton (WMSL 751), Waesche (WMSL 751), Kimball (WMSL 756), and Munro (WMSL 755) have all deployed to the Western Pacific.

Commissioned in 2008, Bertholf is the first legend-class national security cutter and is homeported in Alameda, Calif. National security cutters are 418-feet long, 54-feet wide, and have a 4,600 long-ton displacement.

Bertholf is named for Commodore Ellsworth P. Bertholf, fourth commandant of the Revenue Cutter Service and the Coast Guard.