Julie Bishop just hitched a ride on a RAAF plane bound for Vanuatu

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop is on her way to Vanuatu, hitching a ride on a Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) supply plane.

Bishop tweeted a picture from her jump seat, surrounded by defence personnel, as the C17 aircraft departed Brisbane this morning:

Bishop is visiting the island nation to assess damages and determine what further assistance can be provided by Australia in the wake of devastating Tropical Cyclone Pam.

Earlier this week the cyclone passed directly over the main island of Vanuatu, where the capital Port Vila is located, before passing through a series of islands further south, where 33,000 people live.

Bishop will return to Canberra later today ahead of the final parliamentary sitting week before the May budget.

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