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Exercise Kowari gets underway in NT
30 Aug 2016
Australian, Chinese and American soldiers have been conducting team building activities at Larrakeyah Barracks in Darwin before tackling the harsh Northern Territory outback on military survival Exercise Kowari 16. The participants also visited local zoo, Crocodylus Park, to learn about crocodiles, snakes and other native Australian wildlife they may encounter. Exercise Kowari 16 will see ten soldiers from each country learn about basic survival principles, techniques and equipment from the Australian Army’s survival training experts – NORFORCE - before putting their new skills to the test on their own in the remote outback. This is the third time Exercise Kowari has taken place and marks an important milestone in defence cooperation between the three nations.
Army Modernisation Showcase
29 Aug 2016
Australian Army personnel and equipment from across the country are in Canberra from 27 to 30 August 2016 to showcase the latest innovative technologies our soldiers are using to protect the nation’s interests. Intended to showcase the success of Army’s modernisation program to senior Defence leadership, federal politicians and the public, the Army capability demonstration began at ADFA on 27 August, before moving to Russell Offices on 29 August and concluding at the Royal Military College at Duntroon on 30 August. Sitting alongside established capabilities such as the Abrams M1A1 tank, Bushmaster protected mobility vehicle and M777 lightweight towed howitzer cannon, the Army capability demonstration also includes new Hawkei light protected mobility vehicles, the new EF88 Austeyr rifle, a prototype satellite communication system, a new aviation fire truck and various microscopic unmanned aerial vehicles for battlefield reconnaissance.
Army Assisting Remote Indigenous Communities
27 Aug 2016
Australian Army soldiers are working in the Aboriginal community of Laura in Cape York Peninsula, northern Queensland, from April to October 2016 to deliver infrastructure, health services and training to the community as part of the Army Aboriginal Community Assistance Programme (AACAP). Each year the Australian Army works together with a remote Indigenous community to deliver infrastructure projects, vocational skills training and complementary healthcare services. In 2016, AACAP celebrates its 20th anniversary and Laura is the 42nd Indigenous community to benefit from the initiative. Australian Army engineers from the Sydney-based 17th Construction Squadron, 6th Engineer Support Regiment, will be joined by military engineers from Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, Tonga and the Royal Australian Air Force in the Laura community. Australian Army soldiers from 17th Combat Service Support Brigade will also provide the Laura community with health services and training, as well as provide logistics services for ‘Camp Birt’, the AACAP home base for the five-month deployment.
Army Aboriginal Community Assistance Program
21 Aug 2016
Australian Army soldiers from 6th Engineer Support Regiment are constructing a waste water treatment plant in the Aboriginal community of Laura in Cape York Peninsula, northern Queensland as part of the Army Aboriginal Community Assistance Program (AACAP).
Long Tan 50th Anniversary Commemorations in Brisbane
18 Aug 2016
Australian Defence Force personnel joined Vietnam War veterans and their families at Gallipoli Barracks in Brisbane and at events around the country today to commemorate Vietnam Veterans’ Day and the 50th anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan. At Gallipoli Barracks, Australian Army soldiers from 6th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment (6 RAR), held a colour parade. Fought in a rubber plantation during a tropical storm throughout the afternoon and into the evening of 18 August 1966, the Battle of Long Tan was one of Australia’s costliest engagements of the Vietnam War. One hundred and five Australian Army soldiers and three New Zealand Army soldiers from Delta Company of 6 RAR faced a vastly superior force (estimated between 1500 and 2500) of North Vietnamese Army and Viet Cong. Delta Company was supported that day by Australian, New Zealand and United States artillery batteries, two Royal Australian Air Force helicopter crews dropping supplies and, later, by Bravo Company in M113 armoured personnel carriers from 1st Armoured Personnel Carrier Squadron. The Australian Army lost 18 soldiers that day and another 24 were wounded. Vietnam Veterans’ Day is held each year on 18 August to commemorate the Battle of Long Tan and remember those Australian Defence Force personnel who served in Vietnam.
Centenary of the Battle of Romani
08 Aug 2016
Deputy Chief of Army, Major General Rick Burr, DSC, AM, MVO, joined soldiers from four Australian Army light horse units in Canberra on Friday, 5 August 2016 to commemorate 100 years since the Allies’ First World War victory at the Battle of Romani . Fought near the Egyptian town of Romani on the Sinai Peninsula from 3–5 August 1916, the Battle of Romani saw the Anzac Mounted Division and British 52nd (Lowland) Division defeat a larger German and Ottoman force. Victory at Romani came after the Allies suffered set-backs on almost every front, making it a crucial victory. It was also the first large-scale land victory for the Allies in the war. Australian light horsemen suffered the most casualties during the battle, but were described by British commander General Murray as having been the keystone to Egypt’s defence, showing indescribable gallantry, steadfastness and untiring energy. The battle honour ‘Romani’ is proudly displayed on the regimental colours of six Australian Army units, and the Royal Military College at Duntroon has named one of its company’s ‘Romani Company’ in honour of the battle. The commemorative ceremony was held at the Desert Mounted Corps Memorial on Anzac Avenue, which is a second casting of an original statue first erected in Port Said, Egypt, to honour the Anzacs.