The US 94th Army and Air Missile Command will conduct the 2nd live-fire exercise this month at the Palau International Airport in Airai, Palau, today, July 28, 2023. This would be the 3rd time the US Army fired the live Patriot Missile in Palau. The first one took place during Exercise Valiant Shield in 2022, and the 2nd one was held on July 17th of this month.
“Live-fire exercises like this are one of the most valuable ways for air defenders to train, ensuring we have the ability to defend our Allies and partners. Conducting training in different locations across the region enables us to continue enhancing our proficiency to support a free and open Indo-Pacific,” a media note from the US Embassy in Palau explained.
“The MIM-104 Patriot Missile System is a surface-to-air system capable of intercepting cruise missiles, ballistic missiles, and aircraft. During the live-fire, surrogate targets (drones) will fly in a designated area over the ocean to the east of Palau, where Patriot interceptor missiles will engage them,” the note said of the missile system exercise.
The information also said that mariners will be informed and will have limited access near the shore areas and waters under the missile’s flight path during the launch and “where the debris may fall from overhead.”
Palau Bureau of Public Safety will be assisting in the area of the event, and Palau National Aviation Administration will ensure no aircraft will be in the area.