Tonga stages fleet review

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On 4 July 2024 to mark His Majesty King Tupou VI’s 65th birthday and the 50th Anniversary of the Tongan Navy, a Fleet Review was held off Nuku’alofa. King Tupou, with his Colonel-in-Chief of HMAF, HRH Crown Prince Tupouto’a ‘Ulukalala reviewed the six visiting warships and three patrol boats.

The participating ships included:

  • Australia – the amphibious ship HMAS Choules,
  • China – destroyer Zibo
  • Japan – the Mogami class frigate JS Noshiro
  • New Zealand- the dive and hydrographic vessel HMNZS Manawanui,
  • UK – the patrol ship HMS Tamar
  • US – the US Coast Guard Cutter Harriet Lane

The Commander Australian Fleet, Rear Admiral Chris Smith attended the Fleet Review, as did senior naval officers from China, Cook Islands, Fiji, Japan, Kiribati, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, the United Kingdom and the United States.

The celebrations on the Public Holiday included a Thanksgiving Service at the Free Wesleyan Centenary Church and naval parade, involving the RAN Band, followed by a Royal Luncheon at the Queen Salote Memorial Hall.

Whilst on her south west Pacific deployment Choules has also delivered fourteen Bushmaster Protected Mobility Vehicles and associated spares to Fiji. She also took part in exercises with Noshiro and Tamar prior to arrival in Nuku’alofa.

 

Sources: ADF, PLA, HMAF, RN & JMSDF.

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