NNS1704. USS Theodore Roosevelt Battle Group deploys insupport of NATO by DOD Public Affairs WASHINGTON (NNS) -- Secretary of Defense William S. Cohen directed a number of deployments over the weekend that will further increase U.S. support to NATO Operation Allied Force over Yugoslavia while maintaining carrier-based air support for operations in Iraq. Cohen ordered the USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) Battle Group to remain in the Mediterranean and support Operation Allied Force. In addition to Theodore Roosevelt, the battle group includes the guided missile cruisers USS Leyte Gulf (CG 55) and USS Vella Gulf (CG 72); the guided missile destroyer USS Ross (DDG 71); the guided missile frigate USS Halyburton (FFG 40); the fast combat support ship USS Arctic (AOE 8); and the attack submarine USS Albuquerque (SSN 706). The Theodore Roosevelt Battle Group, which arrived in the Mediterranean April 3, was originally slated to deploy directly to the Persian Gulf to relieve the USS Enterprise (CVN 65) Battle Group. Cohen ordered the USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) Battle Group, based in Yokosuka, Japan, to relieve the Enterprise Battle Group so it can return to the United States on schedule in May. To maintain the U.S. commitment in the western Pacific, Cohen ordered one F-15E fighter squadron, a carrier battle group, B-52s and EA-6Bs to remain poised in the United States, ready to deploy on short notice, if necessary. Also, two Air Force AC-130 gunships, presently deployed to Korea, will remain on station.-USN--USN-