On Wednesday 3 September 2014, PNS Nasr and HMAS Stuart executed a Replenishment at Sea evolution (RAS) as a part of Exercise KAKADU. Stuart held course approximately 100ft from Nasr’s port side to replenish its supply of fuel from the Pakistani oiler.
PNS Saif was the first to replenish during the RAS serial followed by HMAS Newcastle. Stuart held course at the lifeguard station behind Nasr and Newcastle, before moving position alongside to take her opportunity.
Commodore Zahid Ilyas, Mission Commander of Pakistani Ships, crossed deck onboard Stuart to observe the transfer with Commander Aaron Nye, Commanding Officer HMAS Stuart.
“In preparation for this exercise I thought communication would be the most difficult aspect of operations, however this has actually been the easiest aspect.
“KAKADU is an opportunity to understand more about our regional partners and to be more comfortable about how we can operate together,” Commodore Ilyas said.
Commodore Ilyas was impressed by the level of interoperability between the coalition navies and felt this was in part due to our shared histories as members of the Commonwealth.
“The Royal Australian Navy and Pakistan Navy both follow NATO and United Nations policy, so many of our procedures are already very similar.
“Many Royal Australian Navy ships also visit Pakistan on their return journeys from the Persian Gulf,” Commodore Ilyas said.
The Royal Australian Navy also participates in Pakistan Navy exercises such as Exercise AMAN, which hosts 11 multilateral nations in Pakistan.
KAKADU is the Royal Australian Navy's largest maritime warfare exercise for the year, occurring in and off the coast of Darwin, from the 25 August to 12 September 2014.