WW-II submarine discovered by Australia-NZ navies

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A wreck of a World War II submarine was discovered off Papua New Guinea during Navy exercises. Australia and New Zealand were conducting joint navy exercise when the wreck was discovered in Simpson Harbour.

Australian defence authorities said the wreck was found off Rabaul. Rabaul was Japan’s forward base for its mainland campaigns in Papua New Guinea, including the critical Kokoda Track battles with Allied forces.

Defence added the harbour was known for submarine operations during the war.

“As with any wreck discoveries, immediate identification is not possible and work will continue over the coming days to identify both the type and the nationality of the vessel,” it said of the undersea find.

“Authorities from the USA, Japan, PNG and New Zealand have been informed of the discovery.”

During the WW-II, Simpson Harbour was the Japanese navy’s main anchorage in the South Pacific. Several ships sunk there by Allied bombing raids. Papua New Guinea was important in the war due to its proximity to Australia and land area, where bases could be built.