Exercise Bersama Shield 2014 – a long-standing partnership builds regional stability
22 May 2014
Military strength and diplomatic might will come together in Malaysia in the coming weeks during one of South East Asia’s most significant regional exercises involving Australia and its regional security partners.
Exercise Bersama Shield 2014 will see the Australian Defence Force join with the defence forces of New Zealand, Malaysia, Singapore and the United Kingdom in a critical test of interoperability.
Leading Australia’s 500-strong contingent, Commander Michael Jacobson said Bersama Shield aimed to strengthen professional relationships and interoperability through a range of conventional and non-conventional challenges.
“The exercise will focus on building our capability to work together,” Commander Jacobson said.
“Our people will face a wide variety of threats and they will need to work together in addressing them.”
Bersama Shield is also designed to further enhance friendships and relationships under the Five Power Defence Arrangements (FPDA), which have been building since its inception in 1971.
Royal Australian Navy vessels HMAS Sheean and HMAS Sydney, as well as two Royal Australian Air Force AP-3C Orions and a E-7A Wedgetail will participate in the exercise.
The 9th FPDA Defence Ministers' Meeting, to be held in Johore Baru Malaysia on 1 June, will include a visit to the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) Base Butterworth, Malaysia. Ministers will receive briefings on the progress of the exercise.
The FPDA is the longest standing multilateral arrangement in South East Asia and has maintained relevance in the contemporary security environment.
The exercise begins at RMAF Base Butterworth today and will conclude on 4 June 2014.
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