Two Australian Navy ships, His/Her Majesty’s Australian Ship (HMAS) Arunta and HMAS Sirius, arrived in Subic on Wednesday for a five-day goodwill visit.
HMAS Arunta and HMAS Sirius dropped anchor at Alava Pier, Subic around 10:00 a.m.
Australian Ambassador Bill Tweddell welcomed the officers and crews of Arunta and Sirius in Subic. He was accompanied by Defence Attaché Col Bruce Murray, AM.
Philippine Navy (PN) delegates headed by Commodore Narciso Vingson, Jr., Deputy Commander of the Philippine Fleet, along with Capt. Ernesto Baldovino, Assistant Chief of Naval Staff for Education and Training, rendered customary welcome ceremony upon arrival of the visiting vessels followed by a port briefing on security.
A statement from the Australian Embassy said the short break from sea will give the ships’ companies an opportunity to continue their association with Filipino colleagues and experience Philippine culture and sights. “Australia values the deepening engagement with the Philippine Navy,” said Tweddell. Cdr. Lued Lincuna, PN public affairs officer, said the goodwill will include series of engagements between the PN sailors and their visiting counterparts. Among the activities are ship tour, courtesy calls, and sports events where PN and RAN teams are set to play cricket and basketball.
Australia and the Philippines have a long-standing Defence Cooperation Program on counter-terrorism, maritime security and assistance to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Modernization Program.
Recently, the PN received two operation-ready Landing Craft Heavy (LCH) from the Royal Australian Navy. PN officials said the vessels will be vital in facilitating and sustaining fleet-marine operations and will bolster the amphibious and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR) capabilities of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).
Source: Manila Bulletin