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Kearsarge ARG Deploys Friday

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USS Kearsarge (LHD-3) in February. US Navy Photo

USS Kearsarge (LHD-3) in February. US Navy Photo

Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) will depart for a Middle East and the Mediterranean deployment on Friday, U.S. Fleet Forces told USNI News on Wednesday.

Ships included in the ARG are the USS Kearsarge (LHD-3), amphibious transport dock San Antonio (LPD-17) and amphibious dock landing ship Carter Hall (LSD-50).

The deployment was at one point planned to be deferred due to the sequestration and the Continuing Resolution battles in Congress, according to budget documents released by the service.

Instead, the Navy has reduced its carrier presence in U.S. Central Command and plans to pull frigates out of the U.S. Southern Command theater.

This week the Navy is likely to announce specifics on additional cancelled deployments.

The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps typically deploy two ARG/MEUs a year, one from each coast.