Fact checks on militaries

FACT CHECK: Australia not giving decommissioned ship to PH


This is AI generated summarization, which may have errors. For context, always refer to the full article.

FACT CHECK: Australia not giving decommissioned ship to PH
The Australian government has yet to provide a statement on the future of the newly decommissioned ship HMAS Huon (II)

Claim: The Royal Australian Navy (RAN) donated the newly decommissioned Minehunter Coastal ship HMAS Huon (II) to the Philippines.

Rating: FALSE

Why we fact-checked this: Aside from being the sole topic discussed in the YouTube video posted on May 29, the claim was also in its thumbnail and title: “HMAS Huon to be donated to the Philippines for free after retirement by the Australian Navy.” As of writing, the video has 6,226 views and 145 likes. 

Facts: There are no announcements from both the governments of Australia and the Philippines confirming the claim. The official Facebook pages of the RAN, the Australian embassy in the Philippines, and the Philippine Navy do not have any posts announcing the transfer of HMAS Huon (II) to the Philippines.

The Australian government’s website also has no reports confirming the claim. The Australian government publishes press releases of inter-government military equipment transfers on its website, like in 2015 when Australia gifted the Philippines former RAN vessels HMAS Tarakan and Brunei.

There are also no public releases in Mateship and Bayanihan, the official website of the Philippines-Australia Strategic Partnership, about the supposed donation. It is where the latest media statements concerning the relations of the two countries are released.


The video merely talks about the potential impact of the vessel in enhancing the Philippines’ maritime capabilities, especially amid increasing Chinese hostility in the South China Sea.

Beijing claims almost the entire waterway, rejecting a 2016 Hague ruling in favor of Manila.

No updates after decommissioning: Commissioned on May 15, 1999, HMAS Huon (II) is the first of six Huon Class Minehunter Coastal vessels. After 25 years of service, it was decommissioned on May 30, 2024. 

Wrong ship: Despite claiming that the Australian government will give HMAS Huon (II) to the Philippines, the video shows a different ship. The vessel, with hull number 85, is Australia’s HMAS Gascoyne (II).

There are also no reports that the said ship will be given to the Philippines. HMAS Gascoyne (II) remains an active ship of the RAN.

Philippine-Australia relations: The two countries have a robust strategic military partnership and took part in the Australia-Japan-Philippines-United States Maritime Cooperative Activity last April. The activity aimed to strengthen regional and international cooperation in the Indo-Pacific following an increase in Chinese aggression in the region. – Lorenz Pasion/Rappler.com

Keep us aware of suspicious Facebook pages, groups, accounts, websites, articles, or photos in your network by contacting us at factcheck@rappler.com. You may also report dubious claims to the #FactsFirstPH tipline by messaging Rappler on Facebook or Newsbreak via Twitter direct message. You may also report through our Viber fact check chatbot. Let us battle disinformation one Fact Check at a time.

Add a comment

Sort by

There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.

Summarize this article with AI

How does this make you feel?

Download the Rappler App!