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Australia’s commitment to regional security in South East Asia will be highlighted during a key defence planning and Command Post Exercise beginning today in New Zealand.

Exercise Suman Warrior is a Five Power Defence Arrangements (FPDA) activity that includes personnel from Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Malaysia and Singapore.

Suman Warrior is an annual exercise designed to test and improve the way FPDA nations operate with each other while confronting a fictitious security threat.

Members of the Five Power Defence Arrangement receive a traditional Maori greeting during Ex Suman Warrior at Linton Military Camp, near Palmerston North, NZ.

The Commander Australian Contingent, Lieutenant Colonel Peter Conroy, said the FPDA had been running since 1971, making it the longest-standing multilateral security arrangement in South East Asia.

"Australia and our FPDA partners share the common interest of the security and stability of the region," LTCOL Conroy said.

"Singapore and Malaysia straddle a vital trade route for Australia and the region in general. It is in all of our interests to ensure we are able to work effectively together as a single group, should the need arise."

Approximately 30 members of the ADF, from across all three Services, will participate in the exercise alongside more than 150 members from the other four FPDA countries. The exercise will focus on planning with military officers from each FPDA nation forming a battle group headquarters to respond to a fictitious security situation.

Exercise Suman Warrior begins today at the Linton Military Camp near Palmerston North and will conclude on 26 September.

More imagery from Exercise Suman Warrior 2014 »