A statement from the Chief of the Defence Force
8 June 2018
The Australian Defence Force is one of the most capable Defence Forces in the world today.
Over the past 18 years, more than 80,000 Australian Defence Force personnel have deployed on domestic, border security and international operations in complex, chaotic and dangerous environments.
I have full confidence in the men and women of the ADF to serve Australia by conducting operations Government directs us to perform and trust our leadership – at all levels.
We are entrusted by Government and the Australian people to operate at all times in accordance with the law. We are also trusted to be 100 per cent accountable for our actions.
History has shown us that nations cannot become selective on what laws its military will or will not be held to account for.
Current allegations related to Special Forces have arisen from within our own community. They are serious allegations and, as Australians would expect, they must be thoroughly examined independently from the chain of command. This is why the matter was referred to the Inspector-General of the Australian Defence Force to conduct an inquiry.
To protect the integrity and independence of the Inquiry, it is essential that we follow due process and avoid any speculation on what the Inquiry may or may not find. I have requested that the Inspector General complete this Inquiry as soon as possible, however it is important to see the IGADF Inquiry through to conclusion – without interference or influence.
We also have a responsibility to ensure our people are treated respectfully and fairly. Inquiry proceedings are conducted in a manner that provides Defence members with access to Defence support mechanisms. Former personnel may seek support through the Veterans and Veterans’ Families Counselling Service (VVCS).
If this message or related matters raise concerns, support is also available from the Defence Family Helpline 1800 624 608.