Commander US Pacific Command Visits Australia

Commander US Pacific Command Visits Australia

The Chief of the Defence Force General David Hurley is hosting the annual Australia-US Military Representations with Admiral Samuel J. Locklear III, Commander US Pacific Command and other senior military officials in Canberra this week.

General Hurley said the military dialogue is an important means to maintain ongoing cooperation and defence arrangements between the United States and Australia.

“Australia has a long-standing and productive relationship with Pacific Command, the US combatant command responsible for the Asia Pacific.

“As economic and strategic weight shifts to the Asia Pacific, Australia’s alliance with the US and our relationship with Pacific Command will increase in significance” General Hurley said.

In November 2011 President Barrack Obama and Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced enhanced cooperation between the Royal Australian Air Force and the US Air Force and increased rotational deployments of US Marines to further enhance bilateral cooperation between the two countries.

While there are no US military bases in Australia, the first rotation of Marines recently returned to Darwin having completed training activities in the region with Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia.

“Increased engagement with the United States in our region gives the Australian Defence Force more combined training opportunities which will improve our interoperability with United States’ forces,” General Hurley said.

This is Admiral Locklear’s first visit to Australia since his appointment as Commander US Pacific Command in March 2012.

Naval Today Staff, July 18, 2012; Image: Royal Australian Navy