Issued by Ministerial and Executive Coordination and Communication, Department of Defence
The Australian Defence Force (ADF) commenced Exercise NORTHERN SHIELD in Northern Queensland today to test its rapid deployment capability to remote areas of northern Australia to defend the country and its national interests.
Chief of Joint Operations Vice Admiral David Johnston said NORTHERN SHIELD was taking place in and around Weipa until 23 October, and was an important annual training activity for the ADF.
“The NORTHERN SHIELD series of exercises allows us to test maritime, land, air, space and supporting capabilities across a variety of scenarios at short notice to ensure that we maintain the state of preparedness that our government requires,” Vice Admiral Johnston said.
“The exercise includes practising our ability to conduct short notice evacuation operations for civilians, which is a key task for Defence.
“This year, the exercise will involve around 400 ADF personnel primarily from the Army and Air Force in training activities around Weipa and will also see the use of the Royal Australian Air Force Base Scherger.
“Each year the focus, location and scale of NORTHERN SHIELD changes to ensure we cover the range of capabilities that may be required from the Australian Government.”
NORTHERN SHIELD’s two previous iterations were conducted in the Kimberley and Pilbara regions of North Western Australia.
Exercise NORTHERN SHIELD 17 will include a local community open day on 15 October.
Imagery will be available at: http://images.defence.gov.au/s20172528