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US Marines arrive in Darwin for exercises with Australia, China


04-19-2017 08:57 BJT

(Source: CGTN)

U.S. Marines began arriving in Australia's tropical north on Tuesday for a six-month deployment. During this period, they will conduct exercises with Australians and visit Chinese forces. The strength of this year's deployment will see the largest U.S. aircraft contingent to Australia in peacetime history, although the 1,250 troops lag well behind the initial plan for 2,500 Marines.

According to Marines' commander Lieutenant Colonel Brian Middleton, the 13 aircraft, triple the four aircraft in past deployments, was a "tangible kind of sign of the US's commitment to the region and the partnership". He also added that the decision to send the aircraft pre-dated the recent escalation in tensions over the DPRK.

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