French-Australian Naval Cooperation, 2020


By LEUT Jessica Craig

THE strength of French and Australian defence cooperation was on show when HMAS Parramatta and Marine Nationale ship FNS La Moqueuse sailed into Sydney Harbour in company on January 31.

The 3600-tonne frigate Parramatta manoeuvred seamlessly with the 480-tonne patrol vessel La Moqueuse, entering Sydney heads in formation.

Before entering the harbour, the ships joined in a passage exercise, conducting officer-of-the-watch manoeuvres and replenishment-at-sea approaches, which allowed both ships’ companies to work on coop- erative capabilities.

The two navies have a long his- tory of cooperation, having stood alongside each other in many operational theatres since WWI and at present in the Indian Ocean and the Middle East.

CO Parramatta CMDR Anita Nemarich said such exercises were integral to maintaining a commitment to shared values, goals and security interests.

“Cooperative maritime activities and interactions at sea allow us to enhance interoperability with our regional partners, including the French Marine Nationale via La Moqueuse, which is based in Noumea,” CMDR Nemarich said.

“Both navies have a shared commitment to the peaceful settlement of conflicts and to strengthening international peace and security, particularly in the Indo-Pacific and Southern Ocean.”

The passage exercise also allowed the Sea Training Group on board Parramatta to conduct training with the crew and ensure it was ready for a busy year.

La Moqueuse conducted a port visit to Sydney as part of her patrol passage.

Published in Navy News, February 20, 2020.

Note:Australian Defence Force personnel recently took part in Exercise Croix du Sud, a biennial French-led multi-national humanitarian assistance and disaster relief exercise.

The Royal Australian Navy Heavy Landing Ship (LSH) HMAS Tobruk, provided command and control and sea lift support during the exercise, which was held in waters off New Caledonia 12-26 Nov 2012.