By USNS Trenton Public Affairs
DURRES, Albania – Military Sealift Command (MSC) Spearhead-class expeditionary fast transport USNS Trenton (T-EPF 5) arrived in Durrës, Albania for a regularly scheduled port visit Jan. 3, 2024.
The port visit provides an opportunity to enhance the U.S.-Albanian partnership as the two nations work together for a stable, secure and prosperous Europe. It also allows the sailors and Civilian Mariners of USNS Trenton a chance to experience the unique culture, historic sights and hospitality of a NATO Ally.
Albania joined NATO in 2009, and in the years since strengthened their partnership via participation in joint exercises in the Adriatic Sea. They last hosted a naval vessel in July 2023 when the USS Ramage (DDG 61) arrived for a scheduled port visit.
“This visit continues to affirm the shared values and partnership between the U.S. and Albania, as we work together to ensure security and stability in Europe and the Mediterranean Sea,” said Cmdr. Damon Bateson, Trenton’s military detachment (MILDET) officer in charge. “The crew and I are excited to visit Durres and spend some time in this historic Albanian port city.”
Port visits, such as the Trenton’s visit to Albania, build upon the long history of demonstrating NATO’s commitment to maritime security throughout the region. As an added benefit to the morale and education of crew members, the historical and cultural sights of the city are of particular interest to Operations Specialist Petty Officer Second Class Cassandra Gallo.
“When I researched where we were going on our next port visit, I was really excited about there being so many historical sites from different time periods. I am looking forward to visiting the Amphitheater as well as the Venetian Tower,” said Gallo.
The USNS Trenton is a high-speed, shallow draft ship with the capability to deliver operationally ready units to flexibly support a wide range of missions including humanitarian assistance, disaster relief, theater security cooperation and maritime domain awareness. It is crewed by civilian mariners, with military personnel embarking as required by the mission.
For over 80 years, NAVEUR-NAVAF has forged strategic relationships with Allies and partners, leveraging a foundation of shared values to preserve security and stability.
Headquartered in Naples, Italy, NAVEUR-NAVAF operates U.S. naval forces in the U.S. European Command (USEUCOM) and U.S. Africa Command (USAFRICOM) areas of responsibility. U.S. Sixth Fleet is permanently assigned to NAVEUR-NAVAF, and employs maritime forces through the full spectrum of joint and naval operations.