The Arleigh Burke class guided missile destroyer USS Donald Cook (DDG 75) departed Aksaz, Turkey, Nov. 9 after conducting a regularly scheduled port call.
While Donald Cook was in port, Sailors attended multiple planning sessions, a reception for participants and a press conference for exercise Dogu Akdeniz 2017. After departing Aksaz, the ship and crew participated in a photo exercise for Dogu Akdeniz.
"Our time in Aksaz was a great experience," said Cmdr. Matt Powel, commanding officer of the Donald Cook. "After meeting with the participants and leaders of exercise Dogu Akdeniz I feel that this will be a great experience for all involved."
"Our first evolution after departing went without a hitch," Powel said. "All involved acted with the utmost professionalism while maneuvering in close quarters, which shows a superb level of knowledge for every ship and its crew."
"Aksaz, was a very beautiful port and our short stay was very beneficial," said Cmdr. Kelley Jones, executive officer of the Donald Cook. "Our hosts were very generous and provided superb support. I know that over the next few days working with the Turkish Navy and our other NATO allies for exercise Dogu Akdeniz will prove to be a very valuable experience for all involved."
Dogu Akdeniz is a Turkish-led, multinational maritime exercise designed to improve combined combat capabilities, increase operational capacity and strengthen relationships among NATO allies. Participating nations include Bulgaria, Romania, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States
, as well as Standing NATO Maritime Group 2.
U.S. 6th Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy
, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe