A Malaysian F/A-18D Hornet escorts an AP-3C Orion as part of the mission during Bersama Shield 2010 out of the Royal Australian Air Force Base Butterworth Malaysia. Malaysia. (Photo: Australian DoD)
12 May 2010 -- Six hundred Australian Defence Force personnel have participated in Exercise Bersama Shield 2010 (BS10), a multi-lateral exercise between Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.
The exercise continued to build on the close working relationship that has been developed between the five nations through the Five Power Defence Arrangements (FPDA) over almost forty years.
The participating nations gathered on the Malaysian peninsula and the South China Sea from 26 April to 7 May to enhance interoperability in the combined air and maritime exercise.
ADF assets participating in this annual exercise included HMA Ships Anzac and Success, eight F/A-18 combat aircraft from 75 Squadron and an AP-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft from 10 Squadron.
In total, 59 combat aircraft, seven warships and almost 2500 personnel from the participating nations were involved in BS10.
Commander of the Australian Contingent, Wing Commander Ken Robinson said the annual exercise provides the ADF with the opportunity to develop relationships with important regional partners while reinforcing Australia's long-term commitment to regional capacity building.
"The FPDA was established as a regional security initiative almost 40 years ago and has now evolved to be an integral part of Australia's regional engagement strategy," WGCDR Robinson said.
BS10 also provided a great platform for the ADF's F/A-18 Hornets to display their air power professional mastery and tactics.
Commanding Officer of 75 Squadron, Wing Commander Phil Arms said his squadron conducted a range of tactical missions in the unpredictable tropical weather conditions.
"The eight Hornets conducted a total of 98 sorties throughout the exercise to achieve a range of tactical missions including reconnaissance, interdiction and defensive air operations while networked with other FPDA combat aircraft and warships," WGCDR Arms said.