Defence Minister David Johnston has congratulated the ship’s company of 'HMAS Darwin' for a second major drug interception within a week during a patrol in the Arabian Sea.
This is the fourth drug seizure by HMAS Darwin in the past four weeks, Commander Terry Morrison and his dedicated crew are making a tangible difference in the fight against the illicit drug trade on behalf of Australia and the international community,” Senator Johnston said.
Senator Johnston said HMAS Darwin seized a total of 786 kg of hashish in 37 bags hidden on board a dhow in international waters, with the street value estimated to be AUD $30 million.
Senator Johnston said last month HMAS Darwin recorded the largest ever amount of heroin seized from a vessel on the high seas, which consisted of 1,032 kg of heroin with an estimated street value of AUD $289 million.
HMAS Darwin is deployed with the UK-led Combined Task Force 150, part of the 30-nation Combined Maritime Forces, responsible for enforcing maritime security in the Middle East and Indian Ocean regions.
“This is an extremely important operation as aside from keeping illegal drugs off our streets, when successful, terrorist organisations use the drug trade to fund their activities,” Senator Johnston said.
Senator Johnston said HMAS Darwin’s deployment is part of a wider ADF commitment to the Middle East including Afghanistan and the Gulf States.