Maitland strengthens ties with Timor-Leste

This article has photo gallery Published on SBLT Sam Devine (author)

Location(s): Dili, Timor-Leste

Topic(s): HMAS Maitland (P88), Pacific Maritime Security Program (PMSP)

L-R: Able Seaman Boatswains Mate Amy Jodrell; Nobel Peace Laureate Dr Jose Ramos-Horta; Brazilian Ambassador Aldemo Serafim Garcia Junior; Monsignor Marco Sprizzi of the Apostolic Nunciature (Vatican representative); and Able Seaman Communication and Information Systems Hayley Burke, in Dili, Timor-Leste. (photo: )
L-R: Able Seaman Boatswains Mate Amy Jodrell; Nobel Peace Laureate Dr Jose Ramos-Horta; Brazilian Ambassador Aldemo Serafim Garcia Junior; Monsignor Marco Sprizzi of the Apostolic Nunciature (Vatican representative); and Able Seaman Communication and Information Systems Hayley Burke, in Dili, Timor-Leste.

HMAS Maitland completed a port visit to Dili recently that highlighted the Royal Australian Navy’s commitment to regional engagement.

Maitland's Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Commander Julia Griffin, welcomed the opportunity to visit an important regional neighbour.

"Our time here showcased the friendship shared between Australia and Timor-Leste and the importance of strengthening the relationship further into the future," Lieutenant Commander Griffin said.

The patrol boat's visit coincided with the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) Regional Forum Workshop on Dispute Resolution and Law of the Sea.

The workshop centred on the successful negotiations between Timor-Leste and Australia in settling a permanent maritime boundary through the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) Conciliation Commission.

Australia is an active participant in the ASEAN Regional Forum as a key platform for dialogue on regional security in the Indo-Pacific and the importance of emerging challenges being resolved in accordance with international law.

The workshop enabled Australia, with Timor-Leste, to share recent experience in resolving a maritime dispute.

The port visit culminated in an official reception featuring a Ceremonial Sunset led by Lieutenant Matthew Newman.

"The opportunity to be involved in the guard was incredibly special.

“All involved performed to a very high standard to represent the Royal Australian Navy at its best,” he said.

Under the Pacific Maritime Security Program, Australia will provide Timor-Leste with two Guardian Class Patrol Boats in 2023. The boats will enhance the nation’s capacity to patrol its exclusive economic zone and respond to events in the maritime domain.