The Australian and Vietnamese militaries have teamed on a United Nations Mission (UNMISS) to deliver medical field support for the ongoing conflict in South Sudan.
During the mission, a Royal Australian Air Force C-17A Globemaster strategic transport aircraft conducted a strategic airlift for more than 60 Vietnamese warfighters, enabling the country to rotate its staff at the Role 2 Field hospital in Sudan.
The jet carried the personnel and associated equipment from Ho Chi Minh City to Juba, South Sudan.
Vietnamese President Võ Văn Thưởng led a departure ceremony to honor the peacekeepers participating in the operation.
According to the Australian Department of Defence, the UNMISS partnership with Sudan bolsters Australia and Vietnam’s regional collaboration to sustain global security.
“Vietnam is an important partner for Australia. We share a strategic interest in maintaining a peaceful and stable Indo-Pacific,” Australian Defence Force Joint Operations Chief Lt. Gen. Greg Bilton stated.
“Our militaries work collectively and learn from each other – not only through this close peacekeeping partnership, but also through professional military education and skills exchange programs.”
The recent flight to Sudan is the fifth bilateral mission between Australia and Vietnam under UNMISS.
This year, the countries celebrated the 50th anniversary of their diplomatic relationship.
Future collaborations are expected to “elevate” their cooperation in international peacekeeping missions.
“I am proud of the work we are doing together to strengthen our enduring partnership to support the important work of the United Nations,” Bilton expressed.
War in South Sudan
In the first quarter of the year, the conflict in South Sudan has taken more than 400 lives.
The violence began in an attack last Christmas Eve on communities in the Greater Pibor Administrative Area.
Ethnic differences are the primary cause of this conflict, with similar incidents spreading across the country.