Australian flagship HMAS Canberra returns from six-month Asia deployment

Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Michael Noonan, AO, RAN welcomes home HMAS Canberra. Photo: Royal Australian Navy

Royal Australian Navy landing helicopter dock HMAS Canberra returned home last week, completing a six-month deployment to Asia.

The 230-meter LHD sailed almost 22,000 nautical miles during the deployment, visiting Sri Lanka, India, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore and Indonesia as part of the international engagement exercise Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2019.

During this phase of the deployment, Canberra participated in the bilateral maritime exercise Ausindex with the Indian Navy, conducted the first passage exercise between the Royal Australian Navy and the Vietnamese People’s Navy and supported the International Maritime Defence Expo 2019 in Singapore.

She also played a key role in exercise Ocean Explorer and the Joint Warfare Series, encompassing exercise Sea Explorer, Sea Raider and Talisman Sabre 2019.

Canberra was home to more than 1400 people during different phases of her deployment with 430,000 meals served to her permanent ship’s company and embarked forces from around the world.

Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Michael Noonan was on the wharf as Canberra arrived and said that the ship’s company had achieved many key milestone in international engagement and amphibious capability.

“HMAS Canberra has proven she is a versatile platform, able to lead multi-ship Task Groups to engage with our regional partners far from Australia, as well as played a key role in successful multi-national exercises.

“Working with our neighbours is vital to maintaining interoperability and protecting our common interests in promoting peace and stability in the region,” Vice Admiral Noonan said.

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