The Mexican Navy goes south

The Mexican Navy has been given authorization by the Senate to participate in the multinational naval exercises UNITAS Atlantic and UNITAS Pacific sponsored by the US Navy.

UNITAS Atlantic will take place from May 17th to May 25th off the Argentinean coast. The Mexican Navy will deploy the ARM 162 California Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV) of the Oaxaca Class, along with an AS 565 Panther helicopter.  A naval infantry company will also be deployed for the land-based exercises.

A Mexican Navy Panther during UNITAS 2009 (Picture: US Southern Command)

The Pacific phase of UNITAS will take place off the Chilean coast next June.

This is the third time that the Mexican Navy participates in the US Navy-sponsored exercises, being the 2009 UNITAS Gold Edition its last contribution.

Note: The ARM 162 is the latest patrol ship of the Oaxaca class, built in Mexico by the Navy itself. The ship’s main weapon system is the Oto Melara 76mm naval gun, along with two Oto Melara 12.7mm remote-controlled machine guns. The ARM 162 has also a 25mm cannon in the rear, located above the helicopter hangar. The ship’s main electronic sensors are the Terma Scanter Surface Surveillance Radar and the Selex NA-25 Fire Control Radar and Optronic System.


ARM 162 California (Picture: Mexican Navy)

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