HMAS Ballarat accompanies US/Canada/Japan through South China Sea

Royal Australian Navy (RAN) Frigate HMAS Ballarat has completed a Passage Exercise (PASSEX) with Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF), Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) and United States Navy (USN) ships during its South East Asia deployment.

CAPTIONHMAS Ballarat (third from left) conducts a Passage Exercise in the South China Sea with Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force ships Izumo and Sazanami and Royal Canadian ship HMCS Winnipeg during her South East Asia Deployment. Photo by Leading Seaman Bradley Darrell.

The exercise, conducted in the South China Sea from 8-10 June 2017, included JMSDF ships Izumo and Sazanami, RCN ship HMCS Winnipeg and US Ship Sterett.

During the exercise, the ships completed in-company ship manoeuvres, helicopter operations, personnel exchanges, gunnery exercises and air defence training.

Chief of Joint Operations Vice Admiral David Johnston said the PASSEX enhanced interoperability between key regional defence partners.

“These maritime exercises build on other Australian Defence Force activities with Canada, Japan and the United States and develop interoperability across a wide spectrum of military operations, which enhances stability and security in the region.

“Australia is committed to further developing strong and positive defence relations with regional nations through dialogue and practical activities.”

During the course of its South East Asia deployment, HMAS Ballarat has undertaken engagement activities with Canada, China, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand, the United Kingdom, the United States and Vietnam.

HMAS Ballarat will conduct further exercises with nations in the region during its deployment to South East Asia.

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Brian Hartigan

Managing Editor Contact Publishing Pty Ltd PO Box 3091 Minnamurra NSW 2533 AUSTRALIA

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