- Taranto, Italy, Media Release -

Taranto, Italy (Feb, 27 2001) The 2,200 Marines and Sailors of the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable), after a three-day transit, are pulling in for their sixth liberty port this deployment.  

From February 28th through March 6th  the Nassau Amphibious Ready Group and the Marines and sailors of the 22d MEU (SOC) will enjoy many historic sites at their respective liberty ports.  The USS Nassau will moor pier-side in Taranto, Italy.  The USS Portland will dock in Kotor, Slovenia while the USS Nashville will pull into Dubrovnick, Croatia.

The 22d MEU (SOC) is currently deployed on a routine six-month deployment in the Mediterranean.

Including the command element, there are four elements that make up the 22d MEU (SOC). The ground combat element is Battalion Landing Team, 1st Battalion, 8th Marines.  The air assets come from Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 162 (Reinforced) and MEU Service Support Group 22 supplies the beans and bullets. 

The 22nd MEU (SOC), led by Col. Paul E. Lefebvre, conducted bilateral training with the Tercio de la Armada during Spanish PHIBLEX in December of 2000 and the Italian 1st Armored Regiment during Capo Teulada FTEX 1-01, February 2001

 In previous deployments, The 22nd MEU warriors were called upon to conduct operations in Sierra Leone, Albania and Central America.

For additional information regarding the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit, please contact one of the following Marines:  1stLt. Mikal Rasheed, 22nd MEU Public Affairs Officer, at rasheedma@22meu.usmc.mil or rasheedma@nassau.usmc.mil. , SSgt.  Timothy A. Streaty, 22d MEU, Public Affair Chief, streatyta@nassau.usmc.mil.