Marine Rotational Force – Darwin (MRF-D) has departed the Northern Territory after completing its 2019 rotation Downunder.
CAPTION: US Marine Corps MV-22B Ospreys depart Darwin for Hawaii after a busy year in Australia. US Marine Corps photo by First Lieutenant Colin Kennard.
A wide range of training and high-end exercises aimed at strengthening cooperation between the Australian Defence Force and the US Marine Corps were conducted while the largest rotation to date was in Australia.
Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds said this year’s rotation was the largest and most capable US Marine Corps deployment to Australia to date.
“This rotation consisted of an initial base force of around 1700 personnel, and reached a milestone 2500 with additional Marines arriving in Darwin between July and September,” Minister Reynolds said.
“The United States Force Posture Initiatives (USFPI), of which the Marine Rotational Force – Darwin is a key component, demonstrates the strength of the Australia-US alliance and our deep engagement with the Indo-Pacific region.
“To support Australia’s evolving strategic objectives, future MRF-D rotations will focus on increasing regional engagement, deepening interoperability between the ADF and the US Marine Corps, as well as positioning our forces to respond to crises including humanitarian assistance and disaster response.”
To support USFPI activities, Australia and the United States will invest around $2 billion on aircraft maintenance and support facilities, fuel storage, accommodation upgrades and upgrades to training areas and ranges.
Senator for Northern Territory Sam McMahon said USFPI continued to provide significant economic benefits for the Top End.
“Around $8 billion will be invested over the next decade in new and upgraded facilities in the Northern Territory,” Dr McMahon said.
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