HMAS Darwin leaves on a high!

HMAS Darwin has completed her highly successful deployment to the Middle East in support of Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) and is now heading home to Sydney.

Major General Craig Orme, AM, CSC, addresses HMAS Darwin ship's company as part of their medal presentation following their successful deployment.

Major General Craig Orme, AM, CSC, addresses HMAS Darwin ship’s company as part of their medal presentation following their successful deployment.

Deployed under tasking to CMF’s Combined Task Force 150 (CTF-150) HMAS Darwin and her Ship’s Company seized narcotics with a street value of more than USD 1.9 billion during their five month long deployment.

Over this period, HMAS Darwin had been supporting CTF-150 in the mission to promote maritime security and to counter terrorist acts and related illegal activities. Darwin has been the backbone of CTF-150 operations and achieved remarkable success. During a series of often long and difficult boarding operations they seized in excess of twelve metric tonnes of narcotics and hold the record for the largest ever single seizure of heroin (1,032 kg) in CMF’s history.

Over six tons of hashish found concealed onboard a dhow by HMAS Darwin's boarding team.

Over six tons of hashish found concealed onboard a dhow by HMAS Darwin’s boarding team.

During the deployment, Darwin has also undertaken a number of Safety Of Life At Sea (SOLAS) actions including the rescue of eleven fishermen and two children, found adrift off the coast of Pakistan in March after their vessel had sunk five days earlier. The ship also conducted a delicate medivac operation of a French fisherman who had suffered a heart attack.

HMAS Darwin's embarked S-70B Seahawk helicopter  winches Medic, Leading Seaman Tracey Kearns onto the forecastle of the French vessel, Cap Saint Vincent, in response to a distress signal sent from the boat.

HMAS Darwin’s embarked S-70B Seahawk helicopter winches Medic, Leading Seaman Tracey Kearns onto the forecastle of the French vessel, Cap Saint Vincent, in response to a distress signal sent from the boat.

HMAS Darwin’s Commanding Officer, Commander Terry Morrison, is extremely proud of the efforts of his crew and notes that their success sets a high bar for other ships following in their footsteps.

He said: “This team of highly-trained sailors has performed incredibly well in everything from search and rescue operations, to making significant drug interdictions that will effectively impact funding for extremist and terrorist organisations. We have followed in the wake of a long succession of Australian and other CMF warships and we wish the crew of HMAS Toowoomba a very successful deployment.”

HMAS Darwin ships company form up on the flight deck to commemorate ANZAC Day during a dawn service in the middle of the Indian Ocean.

HMAS Darwin ships company form up on the flight deck to commemorate ANZAC Day during a dawn service in the middle of the Indian Ocean.

HMAS Darwin is the 57th Australian warship to deploy to the Middle East since the first Gulf War in 1990.

About Combined Maritime Forces

CMF is a unique multi-national naval coalition, dedicated to promoting security and prosperity across 3.2 million square miles of international waters in the Middle East. CMF’s main focus areas are defeating terrorism, preventing piracy, reducing illegal activities, and promoting a safe maritime environment.
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