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Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin, US Navy 7th Fleet commander dismissed

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Washington: After multiple incidents involving the US Navy’s 7th Fleet, reports suggest that Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin has been dismissed as the commander of the US 7th Fleet. The fleet is based in Yokosuka and four ships belonging to it have been involved in fatal incidents that have caused the death of many sailors in the year 2017 alone.

The most recent incidents involving the guided-missile destroyer USS John S. McCain happened on Monday when it collided with a merchant ship. At least ten sailors are missing ever since the incidents and there is no trace of them thus far.

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Adm. Scott Swift, commander of the US Pacific Fleet while talking to the reporters said that “some” remains have been recovered. Nonetheless the Navy is yet to reveal details about the people whose remains have been discovered.

The collision between the guided-missile destroyer USS John S. McCain and the tanker ship happened Monday east of the Malacca Strait.

Some media reports have said that Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin has been relieved of his duties due to a loss of confidence in his ability to command. Adm. Scott Swift, commander of US Pacific Fleet, dismissed Aucoin on these grounds, and Rear Adm. Phil Sawyer, who has been promoted to Vice Adm., will take over the responsibilities with immediate effect, local media reported. Some media outlets have quoted Swift as saying saying that the accidents cannot be viewed in isolation and that the Navy will review all of its ships in the Pacific in terms of training and assessments of each vessel, as well as focusing on its ships’ navigation and mechanical systems.

Besides the destroyer USS John S. McCain incident in June there was another major incident involving US Navy’s guided-missile destroyer USS Fitzgerald and a Philippine container vessel in waters about 100 kilometers southwest of Yokosuka, Japan.

Meanwhile Swift told the media that the US Navy and Marine Corps divers found the remains in the sealed compartments aboard the McCain after it docked at a naval base in Singapore. He further said that the US military divers continue to search the flooded areas of the McCain.

Besides, there are reports that the Royal Malaysian Navy has located one body at sea, and officials are working to determine if it is one of the missing sailor.

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