The Royal Australian Navy’s Adelaide-class frigate, HMAS Darwin, sailed for the Middle East region December 30.
The 229 Royal Australian Navy personnel onboard had a curtailed Christmas break, having just completed a significant period of training in preparation for their Operation MANITOU role.
Darwin’s deployment is the 62nd rotation of a Royal Australian Navy ship to the Middle East region since 1990 and the seventh by Darwin itself. She will relieve sister-ship, HMAS Melbourne.
Darwin will operate as part of the multi-national Combined Maritime Forces. This includes approximately three dozen ships from 30 nations patrolling more than 2.5 million square miles of international waters.
Darwin is a sister ship to guided missile frigate Melbourne who has been in the Middle East now for almost six months.
Since starting operational duties in September 2015, Melbourne has conducted four successful seizures of illegal narcotics totalling more than 900 kilograms.