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200 Vessels Checked, 35 Infringements Found During HMNZ Hawea’s Patrol Work

200 Vessels Checked, 35 Infringements Found During HMNZ Hawea’s Patrol Work
Fijian and New Zealand Navy members after the combined training on July 5, 2017. Photo: Lusiana Tuimaisala
July 06
12:33 2017

Over 200 vessels have been inspected, and 35 infringements detected during patrol work by the Suva-based Royal New Zealand Navy vessel HMNZ Hawea.

This was revealed by the Commanding Officer Lieutenant Dave Luhrs during the combined training between the Republic of Fiji Navy and the Royal New Zealand Navy yesterday.

Lieutenant Luhrs said the vessel is in Fiji to help patrol the territorial waters, and Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) for over six months.

Fiji’s territorial waters and EEZ encompass more than 1.1 million square kilometres.

“Hawea’s deployment to Fiji marks the first time that a RNZN Inshore Patrol Vessel is deployed to the South Pacific, and fulfils the New Zealand government’s commitment to assist Fiji in maritime surveillance,” he said.

“Hawea is conducting maritime surveillance, security and fisheries patrols alongside personnel from the Republic of Fiji Military Forces.”

He said the fisheries patrols aimed to support effective fisheries management and contribute to a wider multi-national approach to enhance maritime surveillance in the Southwest Pacific.

“Since arriving in Fiji in late April the ship has undertaken a two-week high intensity training and integration with personnel from Fiji’s Ministry of Fisheries and Forests, Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority and the Republic of Fiji Navy (RFN).”

Hawea has completed four combined fisheries and customs patrol to date, with many more to follow. Each patrol lasts about a week, he added.

Moreover, the combined training is being achieved between the RNZN and the RFN as crew members of Hawea learn about the Fijian waters, reef navigation and the local culture from the RFN officers and sailors.

Up to four Republic of Fiji Navy sailors join the ship for training every time she goes on patrols.

Hawea is currently operating with 28 crew members, four Fijian Customs and Fisheries Officers and six RFN personnel.

Yesterday 12 RFN and 27 RNZN took part in the training on how to use emergency appliances during times of emergency. They were also trained on how to operate and use a 50 calibre machine gun.

It is expected that the numbers of Fijian Navy personnel within Hawea’s crew would increase over the course of the deployment as integration training is completed.

 

Edited by Ranoba Baoa

Feedback:  lusiana.tuimaisala@fijisun.com.fj

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