US Marines and sailors deployed in the Gulf with the Fleet Anti-Terrorism Security Team, Central Command (FASTCENT) Company, embarked on a merchant vessel to provide security during a Strait of Hormuz transit on October 21st.
FASTCENT marines work with US partners and allies to protect personnel and property while simultaneously ensuring freedom of navigation in international waterways.
"A strong US presence in the Gulf region is both a deterrent to any potential adversaries who may have an interest in disrupting the maritime domain or using the seas for nefarious purposes, as well as a force to reassure allies and partners of the US's commitment to ensuring the free flow of commerce throughout the region," said Brig. Gen. Matthew Trollinger, Commander of Task Force 51/5th Marine Expeditionary Brigade.
Marines with FASTCENT have a history of performing a wide variety of missions and contingencies related to deterring, detecting and mitigating threats, and defending vital naval and national assets against terrorism since its activation in 1986.
"The US Navy and Marine Corps has and will continue to protect US forces and interests in the region," said Vice Admiral Jim Malloy, commander of US Naval Forces in the Middle East.
"This includes routine escorting and embarking on US flagged vessels transiting through the region," he said.
"We are focused on maintaining strong defences and exposing nefarious actors. We are not seeking conflict, but we will be prepared to defend ourselves and respond to attacks on US forces and our interests," said Malloy.