USS Tortuga to participate in Balikatan Exercises

The USS Tortuga (LSD-46) arrived Tuesday at the Manila South Harbor and will be participating in this year's "Balikatan Exercises" in Luzon.

After her Manila stopover, the amphibious dock landing ship of the US 7th Fleet based in Sasebo, Japan will sail towards Subic Bay, Zambales.

During the "Balikatan Exercises" in the island of Luzon from April 5 to 17, the ship will support Philippine and US troops’ joint training for humanitarian assistance and disaster response scenarios.

The USS Tortuga is part of the Bonhomme Richard Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and is currently on deployment in the US 7th Fleet area of responsibility.

The Bonhomme Richard ARG reports to the commander of the Amphibious Force 7th Fleet, Rear Admiral Jeffrey A. Harley, headquartered in White Beach, Okinawa, Japan.

The USS Tortuga (LSD-46) is a Whidbey Island-class dock landing ship of the United States Navy. She was the second Navy ship to be named for the Dry Tortugas, a group of desert coral islets 60 miles (97 kilometers) west of Key West, Florida.

The USS Tortuga was laid down on March 23, 1987, by the Avondale Shipyards in New Orleans, Louisiana and was commissioned on Nov. 17, 1990.