UK carrier strike group back in Guam

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The Royal Navy's new aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth (Wikipedia photo by Dave Jenkins)

The HMS Queen Elizabeth carrier strike group is back on Guam for routine maintenance and R&R after coming from an exercise in Japan.

Vera Topasna, Community Defense Liaison Office Director, said the UK strike group will be on island for about two weeks.

Adelup has allowed the crew members to go on liberty but only 25 percent of the total crew at a time.

Topasna said all the members of the strike group are vaccinated but the 25 percent limitation was agreed upon as a further precaution to mitigate COVID-19 risks.

The British crew has also been briefed and instructed to conduct themselves in the highest standard of behavior to prevent another untoward incident.

It will be recalled that the last time the strike group was here, two of its crewmembers were charged with assault and disorderly behavior.

The relatively long stay of the strike group on Guam is expected to benefit the island’s hotels, restaurants, and retail outlets.

The first time that the strike group was on Guam was last month when it participated in the US military’s freedom of navigation exercises in the region, particularly the hotly disputed South China Sea.

The HMS Queen Elizabeth is the fleet flagship of the Royal Navy and is capable of carrying 60 aircraft including fixed-wing, rotary-wing, and autonomous vehicles.

It is the central part of a UK Carrier Strike Group, consisting of escorts and support ships, with the aim of facilitating carrier-enabled power projection.

While on Guam, members of the crew are scheduled to do a number of community work projects.

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