Australia and Malaysia continue partnership to combat people smuggling

Australia and Malaysia launched Operation Redback XIII today, a joint border protection exercise to fight maritime crime in the Malacca Strait.

The thirteenth iteration of Operation Redback is being held from 17 to 21 June 2019 and will see more than 80 officers from the Australian Border Force (ABF) and Malaysia Coast Guard (MCG) come together in Klang, Malaysia.

Through the joint operation, ABF and MCG officers will build their operational skills and enhance their preparedness for combating a range of maritime threats including people smuggling, terrorism and human trafficking.

Home Affairs Regional Director Chris Waters said Operation Redback reflects the strength of ABF’s enduring partnership with MCG which has grown significantly over the past six years.

“Australia is committed to deepening our engagement with Malaysia and I’m pleased that our bilateral maritime border protection relationship continues to go from strength to strength,” he said.

MCG First Admiral Maritime Anor bin Jaafar said Operation Redback provides an important opportunity for both countries to hone its maritime border protection capabilities.

“We are committed to continuing this collaboration with the ABF – not only from an enforcement aspect but to ensure officers and members have the skills and knowledge to deal with any situation while performing border security operations.

“So far this year, the MCG has detected and disrupted 376 cases of people smuggling and maritime crime activities, with 78 cases involving undocumented immigrants totaling 456 persons from several neighbouring countries being arrested. This success underlines the value of joint training exercises such as Operation Redback,” he said.

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