Singapore’s Senior Minister of State for Defence Zaqy Mohamad hosted United States (U.S.) Vice President Kamala Harris to a visit at RSS Singapura – Changi Naval Base on August 23. Also present were Minister for Foreign Affairs Dr Vivian Balakrishnan, Singapore Ambassador to the U.S. Ashok Mirpuri, U.S. Chargé d’Affaires Rafik Mansour, Chief of Navy Rear-Admiral Aaron Beng, as well as other senior officials from Singapore and the U.S.
During the visit, Vice President Harris was briefed on how Changi Naval Base has supported the U.S.’ continued presence and engagement in the region over the past few decades, as well as the regular interactions between the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) and the U.S. Navy (USN) through bilateral and multilateral exercises and professional exchanges. She also viewed a demonstration of the RSN’s latest Maritime Security Unmanned Surface Vessel.
Vice President Harris also visited the USS Tulsa – a US Littoral Combat Ship that was in the region for the annual USN-led multilateral Southeast Asia Cooperation and Training (SEACAT) exercise, which was coordinated by the RSN’s Information Fusion Centre.
Vice President Harris is in Singapore on an official visit from 22 to 24 August 2021. Vice President Harris’ visit to the RSN underscores the excellent and long-standing defense relations between Singapore and the U.S. The defense establishments of Singapore and the US enjoy extensive interactions, including dialogues, military-to-military exchanges, training and cross-attendance of courses, and technology cooperation. Both defense establishments also provide long-standing support for each other’s forces in their home countries.
In 2019, both countries renewed the 1990 Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Regarding United States Use of Facilities in Singapore and signed an MOU concerning the establishment of a Republic of Singapore Air Force Fighter Training Detachment at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam.
Image credit: MINDEF. United States Vice President Kamala Harris receiving a brief at the viewing gallery of the Fleet Command Building in Changi Naval Base. Accompanying Vice President Harris at the brief were Minister for Foreign Affairs Dr Vivian Balakrishnan (far left), Senior Minister of State for Defence Zaqy Mohamad (second from right) and Chief of Navy (CNV) Rear-Admiral (RADM) Aaron Beng (far right).