Royal Australian Navy’s Anzac-class frigate HMAS Anzac has commenced a regional-presence deployment to Southeast Asia.
CAPTION: HMAS Anzac departs Fleet Base West on a regional deployment. Screen-grab from video by Leading Seaman Ernesto Sanchez.
Families and friends lined the wharf at Fleet Base West at HMAS Stirling in Rockingham to farewell the 3600-tonne warship and its nearly 200-strong crew for the five-month deployment.
During the deployment, Anzac will support Operation Argos, the Australian Defence Force’s commitment to the international effort to enforce United Nations Security Council sanctions on North Korea.
Anzac will participate in the annual Five Power Defence Arrangements exercise, Bersama Shield, which enhances interoperability between Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore and the United Kingdom.
Anzac will also participate in Exercise Lumbas, which aims to deepen interoperability between the Philippine Navy and RAN.
Now in its 23rd iteration, Exercise Lumbas is one of the RAN’s longest-running continuous engagements in the region.
The deployment will include navy-to-navy engagements while at sea and during port visits.
Anzac’s crew will also commemorate Anzac Day while deployed.
Commander Australian Fleet Rear Admiral Chris Smith said that such routine deployments demonstrated Australia’s commitment to, and engagement with, our partners in the Indo-Pacific region.
“HMAS Anzac’s regional-presence deployment is the first for 2023, and part of a robust, decades-long program of Defence international engagement with countries in and around the Indo-Pacific,” Rear Admiral Smith said.
“Regional-presence deployments strengthen our practical cooperation with regional partners and demonstrate Australia’s commitment to a stable, peaceful, resilient and prosperous Indo-Pacific.
“Maintaining our presence in the region involves a significant commitment by Navy personnel, which is made possible by the valued support and sacrifice of families and loved ones at home in Australia. This support is deeply appreciated.”
Alongside regional partners, Anzac’s sister ship, HMAS Perth, recently participated in Exercise La Perouse, a French-led multilateral maritime exercise in the Bay of Bengal.
Navy’s participation in exercises and other cooperative activities will continue through this deployment and others in 2023.