A contingent of specialist Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel have arrived in Vietnam to participate in Pacific Partnership 2022. Pacific Partnership is the largest annual multilateral humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Pacific region, with ADF personnel joining the United States-led mission to provide specialist support.

Approximately 30 ADF personnel will be involved in the mission, with a team of medical specialists arriving in Vietnam yesterday to join ADF Gender, Peace and Security Advisors and Royal Australian Navy musicians already on board United States Military Sealift Command hospital ship, USNS Mercy.

Deputy Chief of Joint Operations Air Vice-Marshal Michael Kitcher said the ADF’s support to Pacific Partnership 2022 is about enhancing resilience and preparedness in the Indo-Pacific region. “ADF participation in Pacific Partnership 2022 demonstrates our commitment to fostering enduring partnerships, trust and interoperability between nations in our region,”  Kitcher said. “COVID-19 restrictions meant we haven’t been able to fully participate in the program since 2019, so it’s a great opportunity to once again work closely with partner and host nations, learning from one another and building capacity within the region. This is an important opportunity to enhance our interoperability with other nations and demonstrate that we remain ready to respond, with our partners, if and when our regional neighbours need our help.”

During the three week visit to Vietnam, the ADF contingent will provide tailored medical, dental and surgical support, guidance on Gender, Peace and Security considerations for operations and participate in a variety of training opportunities and information exchanges. Now in its 17th year, Pacific Partnership is aimed at promoting multilateral disaster management resilience in host countries and strengthening alliances.

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