Australia's world-renowned Bushmaster on show in Brisbane for a visit by Fiji Prime Minister Rabuka

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The Hon Pat Conroy MP

Minister for Defence Industry

Minister for International Development and the Pacific

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media@defence.gov.au

(02) 6277 7840

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minister.conroy@dfat.gov.au

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20 October 2023

Minister for Defence Industry, and Minister for International Development and the Pacific, the Hon Pat Conroy MP, will today welcome the Prime Minister of Fiji, the Hon Sitiveni Rabuka to Gallipoli Barracks in Queensland.

Prime Minister Rabuka and Minister Conroy will see Australian-made Bushmasters in action as part of training exercises between Australian and Fijian Defence Force personnel.

The Bushmaster is world-renowned for innovative design features which protect its crew from explosive devices and small arms fire. The Bushmaster has been used in military operations in the Middle East and most recently in Ukraine.

A landmark agreement to sell an additional 14 Bushmasters to Fiji, announced this week, will further enhance Australia and Fiji’s security partnership, and deepen opportunities for defence cooperation and engagement. The additional Bushmasters will facilitate Fijian deployments to peacekeeping operations around the world.

Prime Minister Rabuka and Mrs Suluweti Rabuka, are in Australia for an official Guest of Government visit, further deepening the close and longstanding relationship between Australia and Fiji.

On Wednesday, a renewed and elevated Fiji-Australia Vuvale Partnership was signed by Prime Ministers Rabuka and Albanese, which will increase the focus on priorities such as climate change action, trade and economic links and First Nations’ culture.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Defence Industry Pat Conroy:

“Australia and Fiji are natural friends and close security partners, and in that spirit, I am extremely honoured to welcome Prime Minister Rabuka to Gallipoli Barracks today.

“We are proud to continue to support Fiji’s global peacekeeping contributions by providing additional Bushmasters to Fiji.

“Vuvale is Fijian for family. This agreement, announced on Wednesday, is a tangible demonstration of our renewed and elevated Vuvale partnership, which is based on trust and listening closely to each other.”

MEDIA NOTE:

Media will be able to access imagery at http://images.defence.gov.au/S20233133.

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