High tempo for ships on East-Asia deployment
The Royal Australian Navy ships supporting the East-Asia Deployment have successfully participated in a number of international engagements since their departure from Fleet Base East in late September, despite Typhoon Hagibis interrupting some of the original planning.
Task Group Commander Captain Andrew Quinn praised the members of the task groups for their professionalism and flexibility.
“We have provided great presence in the region and are demonstrating and improving our interoperability with our international partners,” Captain Quinn said.
“We are proving that the Australian Defence Force (ADF) is a reliable security partner, notwithstanding adverse circumstances being presented at times.”
For the next two months, 11 vessels, four maritime combat helicopters and more than 1000 personnel across two task groups are visiting regional partners in northern and southern Asia for multinational exercises and regional engagement activities.
Since getting underway, HMAS Sirius has participated in Exercise Bersama Lima, an annual Five Power Defence Arrangement exercise.
“This was at times complex and challenging but Sirius represented us with great pride and professionalism,” Captain Quinn said.
HMAS Hobart participated in a typhoon-modified Exercise Nichiu Gou Trident, the Navy’s premier bilateral activity with the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force. The exercise involved complex task group manoeuvres, air warfare and anti-submarine warfare scenarios.
HMAS Stuart represented Navy at the 75th anniversary of the Leyte Landing in the Philippines on October 20. She was later joined by HMA Ships Sirius and Leeuwin in further events to commemorate the Battle of Surigao Strait, the largest naval battle of World War II.
The task groups’ ships have upcoming engagements with South Korea, Malaysia, Indonesia and the United States.
“We have very busy programs going forward,” Captain Quinn said.
“I expect that through our mariner skills, warfare professionalism and Navy signature behaviours we will enhance the ADF’s reputation and demonstrate Australia’s commitment to the rules-based global order.”