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Capt. Jesse A. Wilson, mission commander of Pacific Partnership 2011, left, and Capt. S. Robert Roth, commander of the amphibious transport dock ship USS Cleveland, salute as Timor-Leste President Jose Ramos-Horta is piped aboard Cleveland. Pacific Partnership is a humanitarian assistance initiative, which promotes cooperation throughout the Pacific and is visiting five island nations this summer: Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, and the Federated States of Micronesia.

Capt. Jesse A. Wilson, mission commander of Pacific Partnership 2011, left, and Capt. S. Robert Roth, commander of the amphibious transport dock ship USS Cleveland, salute as Timor-Leste President Jose Ramos-Horta is piped aboard Cleveland. Pacific Partnership is a humanitarian assistance initiative, which promotes cooperation throughout the Pacific and is visiting five island nations this summer: Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, and the Federated States of Micronesia. (Michael Russell/U.S. Navy)

Capt. Jesse A. Wilson, mission commander of Pacific Partnership 2011, left, and Capt. S. Robert Roth, commander of the amphibious transport dock ship USS Cleveland, salute as Timor-Leste President Jose Ramos-Horta is piped aboard Cleveland. Pacific Partnership is a humanitarian assistance initiative, which promotes cooperation throughout the Pacific and is visiting five island nations this summer: Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, and the Federated States of Micronesia.

Capt. Jesse A. Wilson, mission commander of Pacific Partnership 2011, left, and Capt. S. Robert Roth, commander of the amphibious transport dock ship USS Cleveland, salute as Timor-Leste President Jose Ramos-Horta is piped aboard Cleveland. Pacific Partnership is a humanitarian assistance initiative, which promotes cooperation throughout the Pacific and is visiting five island nations this summer: Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, and the Federated States of Micronesia. (Michael Russell/U.S. Navy)

Capt. Jesse A Wilson, mission commander of Pacific Partnership 2011 and commander of Destroyer Squadron 23, speaks during the closing ceremony for the Micronesian phase of Pacific Partnership 2011. Pacific Partnership is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that will make port visits to Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste and the Federated States of Micronesia.

Capt. Jesse A Wilson, mission commander of Pacific Partnership 2011 and commander of Destroyer Squadron 23, speaks during the closing ceremony for the Micronesian phase of Pacific Partnership 2011. Pacific Partnership is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that will make port visits to Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste and the Federated States of Micronesia. (Helen Frank/Royal Australian Nav)

Lt. Arthur Kalfus, left, and Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Celina Sweat perform dental procedures on the President of Micronesia, Manny Mori, during a medical civic action project at the Pohnpei State Department of Health Services as part of Pacific Partnership 2011. Pacific Partnership is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that will make port visits to Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor Leste, and the Federated States of Micronesia.

Lt. Arthur Kalfus, left, and Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Celina Sweat perform dental procedures on the President of Micronesia, Manny Mori, during a medical civic action project at the Pohnpei State Department of Health Services as part of Pacific Partnership 2011. Pacific Partnership is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that will make port visits to Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor Leste, and the Federated States of Micronesia. (Haleigh Greer/U.S. Air Force)

Lt. Cmdr. Cory Russell examines the ear of a Micronesian girl at Pohnpei Hospital during a Pacific Partnership 2011 medical community service project. Pacific Partnership is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that will make port visits to Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste and the Federated States of Micronesia.

Lt. Cmdr. Cory Russell examines the ear of a Micronesian girl at Pohnpei Hospital during a Pacific Partnership 2011 medical community service project. Pacific Partnership is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that will make port visits to Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste and the Federated States of Micronesia. (Kristopher Radder/U.S. Navy)

Sailors spot a fire during a fire drill aboard the amphibious transport dock ship USS Cleveland (LPD 7) while participating in Pacific Partnership 2011. Pacific Partnership is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that is making port visits to Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor Leste, and the Federated States of Micronesia.

Sailors spot a fire during a fire drill aboard the amphibious transport dock ship USS Cleveland (LPD 7) while participating in Pacific Partnership 2011. Pacific Partnership is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that is making port visits to Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor Leste, and the Federated States of Micronesia. (Christopher Farrington/U.S. Navy)

Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Alan Kampert gives a Papua New Guinean man a malaria test during a Pacific Partnership 2011 medical civic action event. Pacific Partnership 2011 is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that will make port visits to Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, and the Federated States of Micronesia.

Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Alan Kampert gives a Papua New Guinean man a malaria test during a Pacific Partnership 2011 medical civic action event. Pacific Partnership 2011 is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that will make port visits to Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, and the Federated States of Micronesia. (Kristopher Radder/U.S. Navy)

Lance Cpl. Alonzo Aguilera, assigned to the amphibious transport dock ship USS Cleveland (LPD 7), moves educational supplies during a Pacific Partnership 2011 civic action project. Pacific Partnership is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that completed its mission in Tonga and Vanuatu, and will visit Papua New Guinea, Timor Leste, and the Federated States of Micronesia.

Lance Cpl. Alonzo Aguilera, assigned to the amphibious transport dock ship USS Cleveland (LPD 7), moves educational supplies during a Pacific Partnership 2011 civic action project. Pacific Partnership is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that completed its mission in Tonga and Vanuatu, and will visit Papua New Guinea, Timor Leste, and the Federated States of Micronesia. (Christopher Farrington/U.S. Navy)

Seabees assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 133 and Vanuatu citizens work at an engineering civil action project during the Vanuatu phase of Pacific Partnership 2011. Pacific Partnership is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that will make port visits to Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste and the Federated States of Micronesia.

Seabees assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 133 and Vanuatu citizens work at an engineering civil action project during the Vanuatu phase of Pacific Partnership 2011. Pacific Partnership is a five-month humanitarian assistance initiative that will make port visits to Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste and the Federated States of Micronesia. (Tony Tolley/U.S. Air Force)

SASEBO NAVAL BASE, Japan — The sun has set on Pacific Partnership 2011, but not before the U.S.-led coalition treated thousands of patients in several isolated Pacific nations, according to Navy officials.

The five-month humanitarian assistance operation ended Friday, Navy officials said in a press release.

Troops from all four U.S. military branches, as well as units from New Zealand, Australia, Canada, and Japan, treated more than 36,000 patients for medical and dental issues, as well as more than 1,500 animals in the nations of Tonga, Vanuatu, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, and the Federated States of Micronesia, according to the release. They also conducted more than 40 community service projects and 20 engineering projects.

This year’s operation was led by Mission Commander U.S. Navy Capt. Jesse Wilson operating aboard the flagship USS Cleveland, an amphibious transport dock, the release said.

The U.S. Pacific Fleet-sponsored operation began in 2006 in the wake of the devastating 2004 tsunami that ravaged Indonesia. Since 2006, the operations have treated more than 240,000 patients in Southeast Asia and the South Pacific.

“Humanitarian assistance and disaster response is a core mission area of the three sea services, as spelled out in our Maritime Strategy,” Wilson said in the release. “Like any other mission area, we train to be able to execute when the order is given.”

burkem@pstripes.osd.mil

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Matthew M. Burke has been reporting from Okinawa for Stars and Stripes since 2014. The Massachusetts native and UMass Amherst alumnus previously covered Sasebo Naval Base and Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, for the newspaper. His work has also appeared in the Boston Globe, Cape Cod Times and other publications.
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