Saturday, 15 November 2014 00:00
Two South Korean Navy ships with 650 crew members onboard, including 140 midshipmen, called port in Colombo this week.
During its three-day stay, the Cruise Training Task Group (CTTG) has a busy schedule, including official calls, a public ship tour and visits to Sri Lanka military bases.
The 2014 ROK Navy Cruise Training Task Group (Commander, RDML Chun, Jungsoo) arrived in Colombo on 11 November after its departure from its fifth port of call in Jakarta, Indonesia. This port call marks CTTG’s sixth visit to Colombo since the first one in 1977.
ROKN Cruise Training Task Group is composed of 650 members, including 140 midshipmen of the Naval Academy’s 69th class, onboard ROKS CHOI YOUNG (DDH-II, 4,400 tons) and combat support ship ROKS CHEONJI(AOE, 4,200 tons).
Marking the 61st year, the Cruise Training Task Group aims to provide the midshipmen with an opportunity to gain military expertise and hands-on experience that will become essential when they set sail as newly commissioned officers next March.
Starting with Guam, the Task Group will navigate a total distance of 20,240 NM (37,500 km) for the duration of 96 days, calling in at 12 ports in 12 different countries, including Sri Lanka, India and Russia.
The Cruise Training Task Group were given a warm welcome by distinguished guests, including Ambassador Won-sam Jang as well as the Korean community in Sri Lanka. During the welcoming ceremony, the Korean Red Cross presented Sri Lankan Red Cross with 1,000 boxes containing school supplies. Purchased with the funds made available by members of the Korean Red Cross, these ‘Friendship Gifts’ were for local children.
The Cruise Training Task Group’s performance team provided the locals with ample opportunities to learn about Korean culture. The ROK Navy Band, Korea’s traditional percussion quartet ‘Samul-nori’, Taekwondo and K-POP were performed for the locals at Galle Face Green.
In order to enhance the two countries’ friendship and mutual understanding, RDML Chun called on Sri Lanka Navy Commander VADM Jayantha Perera, Commander of Western Naval Area RADM NKD Nanayakkara and Inspector General of Police N.K. Illangakoon.
Midshipmen will visit many historical sites, including the national museum and independence memorial and learn about Sri Lanka’s history and culture in order to widen their global perspective.
Cruise Training Task Group commander RDML Chun Jungsoo stated: “I am very glad to visit Sri Lanka....I hope that the open-ship tours, cultural performances and social exchanges between the two militaries during our visit will deepen our friendship.”
After its three-day stay, ROKN CTTG left Colombo for its seventh port of call in Chennai, India, on 13 November.