The Royal Australian Navy has concluded its participation in the major multinational maritime warfighting exercise.
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Canberra Class landing helicopter dock (LHD) ship HMAS Adelaide has returned to Darwin after concluding its contribution to Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2022 (IPE22) — one of Australia’s largest regional engagement activities.
IPE 2022 involved engagements in 14 countries, including the Maldives, Timor-Leste, Vietnam, the Philippines, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Laos, Cambodia, India, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei and Indonesia this iteration.
An Australian Defence Force Maritime Task Unit of Royal Australian Navy ships and embarked Army members, as well as Royal Australian Air Force air mobility aircraft took part in this year’s iteration.
The contingent included a total of 1,800 personnel, five ships and 11 helicopters.
Exercise highlights included:
- Disembarking two Australian Army Boxer combat reconnaissance vehicles in Singapore for an urban-training serial at Singapore’s Murai Urban Training Facility.
- Integration of Australian and Indonesian soldiers for amphibious beach landing on the island of Dabo Singkep, Indonesia.
- RAAF C-17A Globemaster’s delivery of humanitarian relief supplies to Laos.
- HMAS Stalwart conducting Australia’s first replenishment at sea exercise with the Philippines.
- Hosting Defence Industry Seminars aboard HMAS Adelaide in India, Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia.
- Integration of Australian and Bruneian soldiers for a small-boats amphibious landing demonstration on Penanjong Beach.
- A RAAF C-130J Hercules and crew conducting workshops with Bangladesh Air Force Hercules air and maintenance crews.
Chief of Joint Operations, Lieutenant General Greg Bilton, AO, CSC, said the IPE22 helped strengthen partnerships with Australia’s regional neighbours.
“Building on the Australian Defence Force’s robust and longstanding program of regional engagement, IPE22 is a clear demonstration of Australia’s enduring commitment to an open, inclusive and resilient Indo‑Pacific,” LTGEN Bilton said.
“Enhancing our relations with regional partners enables us to deepen our cooperation so we can work closely together when it counts.
“IPE22 provided a chance for our personnel to build personal links across the region, from meeting senior military commanders to visiting schools and communities. This helped deepen mutual understanding.”
According to LTGEN Bilton, IPE22 has “set a new benchmark” for the ADF’s engagement in the region.
Commander IPE22, Commodore Mal Wise, AM, RAN, welcomed the return to in-person engagements.
“It was great to be back engaging face-to-face with our counterparts across South-East Asia and the Northeast Indian Ocean,” CDRE Wise said.
“With involvement from across the Australian Federal Police, Australian Border Force and Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, it was a whole-of-government effort.
“IPE22 included exchanges with our friends on important issues such as maritime law, gender, peace and security, and military medicine.”
CDRE Wise lauded the inclusion of Australian defence industry and fly-in fly-out elements.