Australia Gifts Two Landing Craft to the Philippines Navy

The Australian Government transferred two of its decommissioned landing craft to the Philippines Navy.

Australian Chief of Navy Vice Admiral Tim Barrett, AO, CSC, RAN, was joined at HMAS Cairns today by his Philippine counterpart, Flag Officer in Command Philippine Navy, Vice Admiral Jesus Millan, at the ceremony to gift the Australian Balikpapan class landing craft to the Government of the Philippines.

Super Typhoon Haiyan caused significant devastation to the Philippines in November 2013, and approximately 500 Australian Defence Force personnel, including the crew of HMAS Tobruk and a deployment of Army Engineers, provided in-country support to the relief effort, at the request of the Philippines Government.

The decommissioned vessels, ex-HMA Ships Tarakan and Brunei, were re-commissioned at the ceremony, into the Republic of Philippines Navy as BRP Ivatan (AT298) and BRP Batak (AT299).

With over 40 years service, the versatility of the Balikpapan class resulted in superb logistics support to Australian Defence Force operations in Bougainville, East Timor and the Solomon Islands, and numerous humanitarian aid missions both domestically and through the region.

Image: Australian Navy

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