Committee to review international armed conflict decision making

Issue date: Friday, 30 September 2022

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How Australia makes decisions to send service personnel into international armed conflict will be examined in a new parliamentary inquiry.

The inquiry was referred by the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence, the Hon Richard Marles MP, on 28 September to the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade (JSCFADT) with the following Terms of Reference. The JSCFADT has tasked the Defence Subcommittee to undertake this inquiry.

JSCFADT Chair, Shayne Neumann MP, said “One of the most significant powers vested in the Executive Government is the decision to deploy Australian servicemen and women into armed conflict where they are at risk of serious injury and death. This review of course does not alter the fact that Labor's defence policy is founded on the principle of Australian self-reliance and the Government and Australia's armed forces need to be able to defend Australia and its interests against credible threats in a dynamically changing geostrategic environment unimpeded by dissenting or short term political opinions.”

Commenting on the inquiry, Defence Subcommittee Chair, Mr Julian Hill MP, noted that “The Government has committed to holding this inquiry which presents an opportunity for the public and stakeholders to present evidence to the Committee on where improvements can be made including transparency and accountability in the exercise of these powers. The Subcommittee will examine whether the current parliamentary processes are sufficient and importantly, if there are inadvertent security implications any proposed policy changes may cause that could compromise the safety and security of our Defence Force personnel.

“During the inquiry it will be important to hear evidence about how other like-minded democracies and Westminster parliamentary systems around the world commit their citizens to conflict.”

The Committee invites submissions addressing the terms of reference to this inquiry by Friday, 18 November 2022.

Further information in relation to the inquiry is available from the JSCFADT’s website.

Media inquiries

Phillip Danh, office of Julian Hill MP (Member for Bruce; Chair, Defence Sub-committee)
Ph: 0469646998

For background information

Committee Secretariat
02 6277 2313

For more information about this Committee, you can visit its website. On the site, you can make a submission to an inquiry, read other submissions, and get details for upcoming public hearings. You can also track the Committee and receive email updates by clicking on the blue ‘Track Committee’ button in the bottom right hand corner of the page.

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