Today I will travel to Solomon Islands to represent Australia at commemorations marking the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Guadalcanal, a turning point in the Pacific campaign.

Royal Australian Navy ships provided vital support to Allied troops during the liberation of Guadalcanal from Japanese forces.  Eighty-four Australians died when the HMAS Canberra suffered critical damage and sank off Savo Island on 9 August 1942.

The “Coastwatchers” network, made up of Australians, New Zealanders and Solomon Islanders, provided the Allies with essential intelligence on Japanese positions at great personal risk.

I will attend a series of commemorations paying tribute to the courage and sacrifice of Australian and American personnel and the people of the Solomon Islands during the Battle of Guadalcanal.

HMAS Success will take part in commemorations in Honiara as part of a Navy delegation led by Commander Australian Fleet, Rear Admiral Stuart Mayer, CSC and Bar, RAN.

I will also meet senior Solomon Island Government representatives to discuss ways the Pacific can further enhance present-day regional security collaboration, following the successful conclusion of the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (RAMSI) on 30 June 2017.

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