Royal Australian Navy warships HMAS Melbourne and HMAS Parramatta concluded their first Japan port call in Sasebo and headed for Yokosuka where they are to take part in exercises with the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force (JMSDF).
Adelaide-class guided-missile frigate Melbourne and Anzac-class frigate Parramatta arrived in Sasebo on October 9, for the first of three port visits across Japan as part of their deployment Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2017.
The visit was primarily for resupply and crew respite before the ships headed for Yokosuka where they were to take part in the bilateral exercise Nichi Gou Trident off the coast of Tokyo.
Nichi Gou Trident is conducted regularly between Australia and Japan since 2009 and hosted alternately by the two countries. The 2016-edition of the drill took place off the coast of New South Wales.
While the broad aim of the exercise is to further develop interoperability between the Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force and the Royal Australian Navy, the ships are set to practice anti-submarine warfare, ship handling, aviation operations and surface gunnery.
In addition to Nichi Gou Trident and a number international maneuvers in the region which JMSDF and RAN ships join, the two countries regularly stage the biennial exercise Kakadu.