Australian ship transits In Kendari

Kendari, Southeast Sulawesi (ANTARA News) - Australian naval ship "Leeuwin" made a transit at the Kendari port in Southeast Sulawesi for six days.

The ship`s commander,Philip Hiaty, flanked by the chief of the naval base in Kendari, Col Yuwono, said to newsmen here on Friday their arrival in Kendari was for recreation and a rest after sailing from Papua New Guinea.

"However we will also use the opportunity to develop friendly relations and cooperation with the Indonesian navy especially the naval base in Kendari," he said.

He said he had chosen Kendari to berth because of the culture of the region which is still original as well as various tourist objects in the region.

"I wish to thank the people of Southeast Sulawesi and Kendari in particular for their hospitality in receiving us," he said.

Philip said the Leeuwin, manned by 65 crew, is a military ship. However the 10-year old ship is not a combat ship but an oceanographic or research ship belonging to the Australian Navy. Therefore it carries no military equipment, he said.

"Although this was the first for us (the crew)to be in Kendari this ship had ever made a transit here several years ago while on the same journey," he said.

Col Yuwono meanwhile said he had made welcoming preparations for the ship before.

"We led it when it entered the Kendari Bay which is narrow and winding so that no obstacles were met," he said.

According to plan the ship weighing 2,250 tons would leave for Australia on July 6.
One of the tourist objects to be visited by the crew is the Moramo waterfall.

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