Fighter Jets Return To Newcastle After Successful Multilateral Ex In Malaysia

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8th November 2010, 06:33pm - Views: 2496

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MSPA  520/2010

Monday, 8 November 2010

Fighter Jets return to Newcastle after successful Multilateral

Exercise in Malaysia

No 3 Squadron has returned to RAAF Williamtown after participation in Exercise

Bersama Padu, which was played out in Malaysia and the South China Sea between

11 October and 29 October. 

Eight F/A-18 Hornets and about 125 personnel from 3 Squadron participated in the

multilateral exercise conducted with the participating nations of Malaysia, New

Zealand, Singapore and the United Kingdom under the Five Power Defence

Arrangements (FPDA).

Bersama Padu is one of the regular training activities 3 Squadron undertakes as it

provides a great platform for the F/A-18 Hornets to display their air power mastery

and tactics. 

No 3 Squadron benefits out of exercises such as the Bersama series according to the

Commanding Officer, Wing Commander Terry van Haren.

“It’s an exercise where we operate out of South East Asia, which is a different

environment for us plus it is an exercise where we can operate with our FPDA allies.”

The Hornets flew 122 missions including offensive counter-air, and maritime and land

operations aimed at neutralising ‘enemy force’ movements during the three week

exercise, along with Malaysian F/A-18D Hornets and MiG-29s.

“We conducted missions out of Butterworth over the eastern side of Malaysia and

engaged ships over the South China Sea. We also intercepted ‘enemy’ aircraft and

conducted air combat training with the other nations,” Wing Commander van Haren


The Hornet squadron worked closely with the FPDA nations to effectively train

together and learn from each other during the exercise.

Commander of the Australian Contingent, Wing Commander Ken Robinson, said the

3 Squadron relationship with the other air components is the strongest witnessed in

the 39 years of FPDA activities.

“Bersama Padu 2010 was a truly integrated exercise, which we are continually

developing,” he said. 

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Issued by Ministerial Support and Public Affairs, Department of Defence, Canberra, ACT

Phone: 02 6127 1999, Fax: 02 6265 1545

“It is highly rewarding to have such great participation from the Australian fighter

jets, which shows the strong spirit of friendship among the nations.”

No 3 Squadron has a long and proud history with the Royal Malaysian Air Force

based at Butterworth. The squadron was based there for about 30 continuous years

from the 1950s through to the early 1980s.

“It’s like coming home for us here in Butterworth. We enjoy coming back to a place

where the squadron has so much history,” Wing Commander van Haren said.

The 40th Anniversary of FPDA next year is a key milestone that illustrates the long-

term commitment of the founding members to Defence co-operation and regional


“The anniversary represents the strong bonds that have been formed over the last four

decades and shows great promise for further development of the FPDA for the

future,” Wing Commander Robinson said.

Bersama Padu, which means ‘together united’ in Bahasa Malaysia, continues to build

on the close working relationship that has been developed between the participating

nations of Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore and the United Kingdom for

almost forty years now.

Over 1100 Australian personnel were deployed in support of Exercise Bersama Padu

2010. HMA Ships Success, Tobruk, Toowoomba, and Arunta; Australian Clearance

Dive Team One from HMAS Waterhen Sydney; and an Australian Army platoon

from the Royal Malaysian Air Force Base Butterworth also participated in the


Media note:

Imagery and video from Exercise Bersama Padu 2010 is available at: 

Media contact: 

Interviews can be facilitated by contacting Flight Lieutenant Skye Smith on 0438 462

944 or

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