HMAS Toowoomba commences operations in Middle East
29 June 2011
The Royal Australian Navy frigate HMAS Toowoomba has commenced patrols in the Middle East as part of Operation SLIPPER, Australia’s military contribution to the international campaign against terrorism, maritime security in the Middle East Area of Operations and counter-piracy in the Gulf of Aden.
Having recently taken over from HMAS Stuart, HMAS Toowoomba’s Commanding Officer, Commander Andrew Quinn, said he expects a busy and challenging six months for the crew.
“Toowoomba’s tasking and employment will be responsive to the unfolding circumstances, but our overriding mission will be to defend Australia’s interests,” he said.
The 191 men and women of HMAS Toowoomba mark the 26th rotation by a Royal Australian Navy ship to the Middle East area since 2001 and will remain deployed in the region until November.
Commander Quinn said his team were well trained and more than capable of meeting the tests of their deployment.
“I am extremely proud of my Ship’s Company,” Commander Quinn said.
“They have trained long and hard for this deployment and I am confident we will overcome any challenges presented to us.”
HMAS Toowoomba has joined the international Combined Maritime Force (CMF) which includes ships from Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Pakistan, Canada, Denmark, Turkey, the United States and United Kingdom.
The CMF is responsible for providing maritime security across more than 2.5 million square miles of international waters in the Gulf region, Horn of Africa and Gulf of Aden.
“With a Ship’s Company that has a capacity for hard work, strong mutual support for each other, and a great Australian sense of humour, it is no surprise that Toowoomba has achieved every goal that she has been set and I believe she will continue to do so during this deployment,” Commander Quinn said.
Images of HMAS Toowoomba are available at: http://images.defence.gov.au/fotoweb/Grid.fwx?archiveId=5003&search=20113172