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Monday, 24 March 2003
Page: 9976

Debate resumed from 6 March, on motion by Senator Brown:

That the following matters be referred to the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade References Committee for inquiry and report by 26 June 2003:

The operation and effectiveness of Australia's security and intelligence agencies in the lead up to the Bali bombings, including:

(a) the discrepancies, if any, between Australia and other nations (including the United States of America) in intelligence received regarding terrorist operations prior to the bombings;

(b) action taken in Australia and elsewhere to warn the public of potential dangers; and

(c) any other matters concerning security and intelligence agencies affecting Australians in relation to the Bali bombings.

upon which Senator Faulkner had moved by way of an amendment:

Omit all words after “26 June 2003”, substitute:

The performance of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and other relevant agencies of the Commonwealth Government in the assessment and dissemination of threats to the security of Australians in South East Asia in the period 11 September 2001 to 12 October 2002, including:

(a) the assessment made by DFAT and other relevant agencies of the Commonwealth Government of the threat to Australians in South East Asia from al Qaeda (and associated terrorist organisations) prior to 11 September 2001;

(b) any change in the assessment of the threat to Australians in South East Asia from these terrorist organisations arising from the terrorist events of 11 September 2001 and the decision by Australia to participate in military actions with other coalition partners against al Qaeda in Afghanistan in November 2001;

(c) any further changes in the assessment of the threat to Australians in South East Asia from these terrorist organisations arising from the arrest and interrogation of the so-called `Singapore bombers' in the period December 2001 to February 2002;

(d) any further change in threat assessments to Australians in South East Asia arising from the arrest and interrogation of Omar al-Faruq;

(e) any subregional variations on the assessment of the threat to Australians in South East Asia in the period 11 September 2001 to 12 October 2002, in particular within Indonesia, including Jakarta and Bali;

(f) any differences between the assessments of the threat made by DFAT and other Commonwealth Government agencies, and the assessments of the threat made by the United Kingdom, the United States, New Zealand, Singapore and Canada over the security of their nationals for the same period;

(g) any differences between the assessments of the threat made by DFAT and other related agencies of the Commonwealth Government and the content of the travel advisories, travel bulletins and embassy bulletins provided by DFAT in the period 11 September 2001 to 12 October 2002;

(h) any differences between DFAT travel advisories, travel bulletins and embassy bulletins in the period 11 September 2001 to 12 October 2002;

(i) DFAT's conclusions of any deficiencies in the assessment system and the system for preparing travel advisories, travel bulletins and embassy bulletins in the period 11 September 2001 to 12 October 2002; and

(j) DFAT's conclusions on improvements to be dissemination of travel advisories, travel bulletins and embassy bulletins to the Australian travelling public in the future.