Australia — HMAS Melbourne welcomed home from Middle East deployment

Today the Min­is­ter for Defence Materiel, the Hon. Jason Clare MP, joined the Com­man­der Aus­tralian Fleet, Rear Admi­ral Stephen Gilmore AM CSC RAN and hun­dreds of fam­i­ly and friends in wel­com­ing the 230 crew of HMAS Mel­bourne home to Syd­ney after a six month deploy­ment in the Mid­dle East.
“This has been a demand­ing deploy­ment where the crew have car­ried out real­ly impor­tant work,” Mr Clare said.

“In Jan­u­ary the crew dis­rupt­ed a pirate attack in progress onboard the British chem­i­cal tanker MV CPO Chi­na. This was just one of the 14 pira­cy dis­tress calls the crew of HMAS Mel­bourne respond­ed to dur­ing their deployment. 

“This is dif­fi­cult and dan­ger­ous work. Their efforts show Aus­tralian Defence Force per­son­nel and equip­ment at their best.” 

Mr Clare con­grat­u­lat­ed the Com­mand­ing Offi­cer of HMAS Mel­bourne, Com­man­der Michael Har­ris, RAN and his crew on a suc­cess­ful high-tem­po operation. 

Com­man­der Har­ris said his Ship’s Com­pa­ny were incred­i­bly proud of their achieve­ments but were clear­ly excit­ed and hap­py to be home. 

“My crew have per­formed excep­tion­al­ly well, dur­ing what was a high­ly com­plex and demand­ing six months. 

“The men and women embarked on Mel­bourne have made a sig­nif­i­cant con­tri­bu­tion to the safe­ty of ves­sels in mar­itime cor­ri­dors dur­ing her deploy­ment, and I con­grat­u­late Melbourne’s crew for their ded­i­ca­tion and pro­fes­sion­al­ism and thank the fam­i­ly and friends of those who serve for their tire­less sup­port and love.” 

“It is fan­tas­tic to be back in Syd­ney today with our fam­i­ly and friends; with­out their stead­fast sup­port the deploy­ment would not have been so suc­cess­ful,” Com­man­der Har­ris said. 

HMAS Mel­bourne is an Ade­laide Class Frigate capa­ble of air defence, anti-sub­ma­rine war­fare, sur­veil­lance, inter­dic­tion and recon­nais­sance. It is the first Ade­laide Class Frigate deployed to the Gulf fol­low­ing the FFG upgrade project which saw new mis­sile and tor­pe­do sys­tems installed as part of exten­sive capa­bil­i­ty enhancements. 

HMAS Mel­bourne was replaced on sta­tion by HMAS Stu­art, which took over in mid January. 

Press release
Min­is­te­r­i­al Sup­port and Pub­lic Affairs,
Depart­ment of Defence,
Can­ber­ra, Australia 

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