Australian minehunters arrive home after East Asian deployment

Photo: Royal Australian Navy

Two Royal Australian Navy minehunters have returned home following a successful overseas deployment that saw them travel a record distance, the navy said.

HMAS Ships Diamantina and Gascoyne traveled more than thirteen thousand nautical miles in the past four months as they deployed to East Asia for multinational and bilateral exercises in Japan and South Korea.

As part of the Exercise Hyuga Nada, the two ships recently completed a dual fuel refuel and stores replenishment with Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force Japanese Ship (JS) Uraga.

“Diamantina and Gascoyne were two of eleven vessels and their crews among the more than one thousand navy people deployed to East Asia since September,” Defence Minister Linda Reynolds said.

Last week, three Australian warships, Hobart, Stuart and Parramatta, also returned to their homeport in Sydney following their deployment through East Asia.

“Destroyer HMAS Hobart, Anzac class Frigates Stuart, Parramatta and Arunta, the replenishment ship HMAS Sirius, HMA Submarines Collins and Dechaineux, the Hydrographic Survey ship HMAS Leeuwin and the Armidale class patrol boat HMAS Ararat have also deployed on similar regional engagement missions.”

Commanding Officer of HMAS Diamantina, Lieutenant Commander Darren McDevitt, said 2019 had been a milestone year for his ship’s company.

“This year we have sailed as far east as Sri Lanka and as far north as the 42nd parallel in Japan, both of which are record distances for any minehunter in the history of the Royal Australian Navy,” Lieutenant Commander McDevitt said.

Diamantina and Gascoyne are two of four Huon class Minehunters based at HMAS Waterhen in Sydney.

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