2 Australian Navy ships dock in Subic Bay for 5-day visit
Two ships from the Australian Navy are in the Philippines for a five-day visit from Wednesday to Sunday, Oct. 7 to 11.
In a news release, the Australian Embassy said that the two ships— HMAS Arunta and HMAS Sirius — are currently docked in Subic Bay.
HMAS Arunta is an Anzac class frigate, a type of warship, while HMAS Sirius is a fleet replenishment ship. The two ships have just completed successful exercises in the Indian Ocean.
“Australia values the deepening engagement with the Philippine Navy,” said Australian Ambassador Bill Tweddell. He was accompanied by Defense Attaché Col. Bruce Murray, AM.
The five-day stop will allow the sailors onboard to explore the Philippine culture and sights.
Both ships have links to the Philippines, the Australian Embassy said.
The first HMAS Arunta took part in the liberation of the Philippines in 1944, including pre-landing bombardments at Leyte Gulf and the Battle of Surigao Strait. In January 1945, the ship was suffered a near miss from a kamikaze at Lingayen Gulf. Also, in July 1946, the first HMAS Arunta carried Commodore John Collins to Manila for the inauguration of the Philippine Republic.
Two Filipino-Australian sailors are currently serving in HMAS Arunta. Able Seaman Electronics Technician Aaron Scott and Able Seaman Boatswains Mate Matthew Parry will be taking some time off to visit with family in the Philippines.
“This deployment is especially important to me as I am able to visit the Philippines again, and I feel proud that my family will get to see me doing my job. It will also be a good opportunity to embrace, explore and remember what my background culture is all about,” Scott said.
This will be also Parry’s first visit to the Philippines. “The port visit to the Philippines will be a great opportunity to meet family I have never met and to see what the culture and the lifestyle is like for my Mother and her family,” he said.
The Philippines and Australia share a long-standing Defense Cooperation Program on counter-terrorism, maritime security and assistance to the Armed Forces of the Philippines Modernization Program.
Australia also donated two transport ships from the Royal Australian Navy to help in humanitarian assistance disaster relief capacity of the Philippines.
The Royal Australian Navy played a big role in Australian Defense Force’s humanitarian efforts in the Philippines in 2013, carrying emergency supplies, water purifiers, generators, earth moving equipment and vehicles to areas affected by Typhoon Yolanda. JE
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