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Australian maritime group docks in Manila for 3-day port visit

GMA News Online logo GMA News Online 9/26/2021 JON VIKTOR D. CABUENAS,GMA News
Screengrab image of HMAS Canberra (III) of the Royal Australian Navy (navy.gov.au) © Royal Australian Navy (navy.gov.au) Screengrab image of HMAS Canberra (III) of the Royal Australian Navy (navy.gov.au)

An Australian maritime task group on Sunday docked in Manila for a three-day port visit as part of this year’s Indo-Pacific Endeavor, which engages Southeast Asian partners to boost regional security.

During the visit, officials of Australia and the Philippines will hold seminars, workshops, and other virtual exchanges covering regional issues such as maritime security, women, peace and security, and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.

Among those docked in the Manila harbor are HMA Ships Canberra, Sirius, and Anzac, with the Philippine leg scheduled from September 26 to September 29, 2021.

The port visit comes a day after the bilateral Australia-Philippines at-sea naval Exercise Lumbas, where vessels of both countries held a series of maneuvers at sea.

The exercises are mainly focused on high-end training and interoperability, which seeks to benefit both nations in increased maritime domain awareness and force generation.

“This visit reflects the spirit of mateship and bayanihan during our 7th Anniversary of diplomatic relations,” Australian Ambassador Steven Robinson AO said in an emailed statement.

“It also demonstrates the increasing mutual trust and cooperation between the Australian Defense Force and the Armed Forces of the Philippines,” Robinson added.

The IPE21 started late-August, with the three-month deployment involving around 700 individuals including Australian defense and civilian personnel and participants from partner nations.

The partnership includes Captain Constancio Reyes of the Philippine Navy, serving as the IPE21’s Deputy Commander.

“We value this opportunity to work with our friends and partners in the region to enhance our interoperability, improve our coordination, and reinforce our shared commitment to a stable region,” said IPE21 Task Group Commander Commodore Mal Wise. —LBG, GMA News

This article Australian maritime group docks in Manila for 3-day port visit was originally published in GMA News Online.

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