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HMAS Choules embarks on Pacific deployment

MEDIA RELEASE

HMAS Choules has delivered 14 Bushmaster Protected Mobility Vehicles to Fiji as part of a month-long deployment in the South West Pacific, enhancing the ADF’s engagement with Fiji and Tonga.

The delivery of the Bushmaster Protected Mobility Vehicles and spare parts to Fiji by HMAS Choules will strengthen Fiji’s peacekeeping capability.

Later in the deployment, Choules will represent Australia at the 50th anniversary of the Tonga Royal Navy and His Majesty King Tupou VI’s 65th birthday celebrations.

Chief of Joint Operations, Lieutenant General Greg Bilton, said the Royal Australian Navy was a frequent visitor to the region and the deployment followed visits by ADV Reliant and HMAS Stuart earlier in the year.

“HMAS Choules is demonstrating its versatility by delivering 14 Bushmaster Protected Mobility Vehicles purchased by Fiji, to the Republic of Fiji Military Forces.

“Australia deeply values our close maritime security partnership with Tonga, which dates back to the 1980s.

“I know the crew of Choules is looking forward to taking part in this significant milestone for the Tonga Royal Navy.

“Celebrating the anniversary along with His Majesty’s birthday makes for a very special event.”

The Australian Defence Force has a strong and enduring relationship with the Republic of Fiji Military Forces. After delivering the Bushmaster Protected Mobility Vehicles, Choules will embark the Republic of Fiji Navy band for transport to the Tonga Royal Navy’s 50th anniversary celebrations.

HMAS Choules is expected to return to Australia in late July.

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