Australian sailor dies during maritime patrol operation

An Australian Navy sailor has died during a maritime patrol operation.

Defence confirmed the death of the sailor aboard an Australian Defence Vessel Cape Inscription on Tuesday afternoon.

The sailor was deployed under Operation Resolute which conducts patrols to combat asylum seeker boat arrivals, illegal fishing and piracy in Australian waters and around offshore territories.

Chief of the Defence Force Mark Binskin expressed his deepest sympathy to the family, friends and shipmates of the deceased, whose name has not yet been released.

"Defence is liaising with local authorities and the cause of death is not yet known," a Defence spokesman said.

"As such, it is not appropriate to provide further details at this time."

Minister for Defence Marise Payne also released a statement acknowledging the death.

"The member was deployed on Operation Resolute, the Australian Defence Force's contribution to the whole-of-government effort to protect Australia's borders and offshore maritime interests," the statement reads.

"I extend my deepest sympathies and those of the Australian Government to the member's family, colleagues and friends and I express my gratitude for the deceased member's service to our nation."