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Samoa receives Nufanua III in handover ceremony

Nafanua III

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — Samoa has received the newest Guardian-class patrol boat SPB Nafanua III during a Nov.  22, ceremony.

Samoan Minister for Police and Prisons Faualo Harry Jeffrey Schuster accepted Nafanua III on behalf of the Government of Samoa during the handover at HMAS Stirling in Western Australia.

"This handover ceremony of the vessel represents a significant step forward in Samoa's maritime security capabilities and underscores Australia's commitment to maritime security in the Pacific region," he said.

Member for Hasluck Tania Lawrence represented Defence Minister Richard Marles.

"The ability to protect our oceans, ensuring they benefit Pacific people, is at the heart of our shared vision for a stable, prosperous and environmentally sustainable region,'' Ms Lawrence said.

  "This boat will help protect the incredible marine biodiversity of Samoan waters - already vulnerable to climate change and from illegal fishing."

Nafanua III will complement existing efforts by Samoa's Police Maritime Wing (PMW) as it undertakes maritime security and surveillance activities, with an eye to tackling illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing and transnational crime within their sovereign waters.

The vessel can also support humanitarian assistance and disaster relief efforts.