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New Zealand naval vessels conclude a successful deployment

The US 2014 Quadrennial Defence Review has been released, outlining plans for the Asia-Pacific region."

New Zealand is not known for a substantial defence force, but the small South-Pacific nation still plays an important role on the global stage.

Like Australia, the country dispatches both frigates and tanker vessels to areas such as the Middle East, Africa and South east Asia as a way of supporting allies and ensuring security in the regions.

Frigate HMNZS TE KAHA and tanker HMNZS ENDEAVOUR have recently concluded one such deployment, returning home early this month after a long voyage. The two ships entered Auckland harbour on 2 August, berthing at Devonport and firing off a gun salute, as well as a Seasprite flypast.

A successful deployment

TE KAHA left Auckland harbour in February of this year, sailing up to Gallipoli where it took part in the centenary events in April. Once these commemorations concluded, the ship sailed across the Western Indian Ocean and joined with the Combined Maritime Forces. There, the crews worked with partner nations to tackle the massive narcotics problem, specifically with regards to smuggling.

"The searches carried out by her boarding parties during those patrols yielded drugs worth about $235 million, which were then destroyed at sea," said New Zealand Defence Force Maritime Component Commander, Commodore (CDRE) John Campbell RNZN.

It's an extremely important task, as the profits from the narcotics trade are commonly used to fund terrorist organisations. Dealing with the problem at sea means a critical trade route is cut off for these smugglers.

The ship then sailed to Australia, taking part in Exercise Talisman Sabre. Such warfighting events are the perfect time to hone the skills the crews spend so long drilling during training.

"Talisman Sabre was an opportunity to practise the core warfighting capabilities she's designed for, and to improve operability with New Zealand's coalition partners," he said.

ENDEAVOUR, on the other hand, left in early March and worked with the Royal Australian Navy to prepare ships for overseas operations.

Capable vessels

The return of these ships means two capable vessels are now safely back in port. The frigate TE KAHA was refitted in 2013, bringing the onboard systems up to a modern standard. Replenishment tanker HMNZS ENDEAVOUR, on the other hand, is a vessel that allows both New Zealand ships and other partner nation vessels to operate away from friendly shores for extended periods of time.

These two ships are likely to head out again in the near future, following a period where the crew can have downtime after such a long deployment.

Interconnect Systems has a comprehensive background in aerospace and defence engineering, being an industry leader for more than 20 years. It provides electrical interconnect products and solutions, including cable and wire harness manufacture. For more information on the best backshells and cable harness solutions, contact Interconnect Systems today on 1800 812 214 FREE.

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