The Singapore Armed Forces (Saf) is conducting a joint artillery exercise, code-named Thunder Warrior 2014, along with the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) at the Waiouru Training Area in New Zealand.
Around 400 personnel from the 21st and 24th Battalions, Singapore Artillery (SA) are participating in the exercise, which started on 13 January 2014.
The SAF troops carried out a battalion live-firing exercise using the Primus self-propelled howitzer (SSPH) in collaboration with the gunners from the Royal Regiment of New Zealand Artillery, (NZDF).
The live-fire drill was witnessed by Singapore’s second minister for defence Chan Chun Sing, who also interacted with SAF troops participating in the exercise.
The exercise is scheduled to conclude on 25 January 2014.
Held annually in New Zealand since 1997, Exercise Thunder Warrior seeks to enhance interoperability between the SAF and the NZDF, and also increase mutual understanding among the personnel of both armed forces.
The exercise also underscores the close and long-standing defence relations that exist between the two countries.
A total of 470 personnel from the 21st and 24th Battalions of Singapore Artillery had participated in Thunder Warrior 2013, which was held from 13 to 30 January at the same location.
Apart from Thunder Warrior, the SAF and the NZDF extensively interact through a wide range of bilateral and multilateral training exercises, professional exchanges, visits and courses.
The two armed forces also regularly interact under the scope of the Five Power Defence Arrangements (FPDA) and the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting-Plus (ADMM-Plus).
Image: The Primus self-propelled howitzer participates in a live-firing exercise during Exercise Thunder Warrior 2014 in New Zealand. Photo: copyright of the government of Singapore.