Australien/Vietnam — Australia completes partnership mission in Vietnam

Aus­tralian Defence Force (ADF) per­son­nel have pro­vid­ed eye-sav­ing cataract surgery and built a school for the dis­abled as part of a coali­tion of inter­na­tion­al mil­i­taries pro­vid­ing human­i­tar­i­an assis­tance in South-East Asia.

Pacific Partnership 2010
Lieu­tenant Stephen Teoh (left) and Lieu­tenant David Law from the Sin­ga­pore Navy con­duct eye surgery to remove a ptery­gium on a 79 year old Viet­namese patient in Unit­ed States Naval Ship Mer­cy dur­ing Pacif­ic Part­ner­ship 2010.
Source: Aus­tralian Depart­ment of Defence
Click to enlarge

22 Aus­tralian Defence Force (ADF) mem­bers have com­plet­ed a two week human­i­tar­i­an assis­tance mis­sion in Quy Nhon, Viet­nam, as part of the US-led Pacif­ic Part­ner­ship 2010 (PP10).

Aus­tralian Army engi­neers from the 2nd Com­bat Engi­neer Reg­i­ment, based in Bris­bane, con­tributed to the re-con­struc­tion of a school for dis­abled chil­dren; fit­ting elec­tri­cal and plumb­ing ser­vices as well as assist­ing local Viet­namese con­trac­tors improve the aes­thet­ics of the build­ing.

Defence Nurs­es assist­ed in the con­duct of 132 oper­a­tions onboard USNS Mer­cy and a Navy Oph­thal­mol­o­gist con­duct­ed 13 cataract surg­eries whilst an Army Med­ical Offi­cer pro­vid­ed med­ical care to approx­i­mate­ly 300 patients through­out the two week peri­od. An Aus­tralian Army Den­tist, born in Viet­nam, but who moved to Aus­tralia at age two, pro­vid­ed den­tal ser­vices to hun­dreds of patients at var­i­ous clin­ics in the Binh Dinh province, Viet­nam.

The annu­al US Pacif­ic Fleet spon­sored human­i­tar­i­an assis­tance mis­sion has giv­en the ADF per­son­nel a unique oppor­tu­ni­ty to work along­side U.S. mil­i­tary per­son­nel, part­ner nations, host nation civil­ians and non-gov­ern­ment organ­i­sa­tions.

Mis­sion Com­man­der, Com­modore Lisa Franchet­ti, Unit­ed States Navy said the con­tri­bu­tion of the Aus­tralian con­tin­gent was crit­i­cal in the com­ple­tion of the human­i­tar­i­an assis­tance pro­grams in Quy Nhon.

“Each and every one of the Aus­tralian Defence per­son­nel con­tributed to the suc­cess of our achieve­ments in Viet­nam. I am very proud of their efforts and grate­ful to have them as part of my 900-strong team,” said Com­modore Franchet­ti.

Com­man­der Aus­tralian Nation­al Com­mand Ele­ment, Lieu­tenant Colonel Helen Mur­phy said the chance to work with so many dif­fer­ent mil­i­tary per­son­nel was a unique expe­ri­ence.

“All twen­ty two Aus­tralians have enjoyed the oppor­tu­ni­ty to work with the Unit­ed States mil­i­tary per­son­nel and per­son­nel from the oth­er five part­ner nations. Each ADF mem­ber has been inte­grat­ed into the mul­ti-nation­al teams and the per­son­al and pro­fes­sion­al devel­op­ment is already evi­dent, after only two weeks,” said Lieu­tenant Colonel Mur­phy.

This year PP10 will also vis­it Cam­bo­dia, Indone­sia, and East Tim­or based on USNS Mer­cy. For the first time since the incep­tion of the mis­sion a Roy­al Aus­tralian Navy ves­sel, HMAS Tobruk will be used as the com­mand plat­form when the mis­sion vis­its Papua New Guinea (PNG). Two Heavy Land­ing Craft, HMA Ships Labuan and Brunei will pro­vide ship to shore sup­port in Indone­sia, East Tim­or and PNG.

USNS Mer­cy and the PP10 team have today arrived in Sihanoukville, Cam­bo­dia for two weeks.

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