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Wilkie and Bandt call for withdrawal of troop -

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agreement. That is the basis for us moving forward.

Business Editor Greg Hoy. And on the Afghanistan war debate in Parliament this week, the Prime
Minister again clarify her warning that Australia will need to stay engaged in Afghanistan for at
least another decade, saying this might mean training, support, aid and civilian works. But she
wouldn't specify what this meant in terms of an ongoing military presence. The debate continues to
dominate the Parliament, with the new Greens' MP Adam Bandt and Independent Andrew Wilkie calling
for the withdrawal of troops. Political Editor, Heather Ewart.

It's in our national interest to be in Afghanistan.

To ensure that Afghanistan never camps for international terrorists.

There is no greater exercise of Government power than to send the nation's armed forces to war.

Every life Mr Deputy Speaker is one too many.

There were no surprises, one after another ministers, Opposition frontbenchers and backbenchers
were today adhering rigidly to bipartisan support for Australia's defence mission in Afghanistan.
The Greens' member Adam Bandt and Tasmanian Independent Andrew Wilkie trod a lone path during the
parliamentary opened yesterday and will go on for days.

It is time to bring the troops home. It is time to bring the troops home safely and for Australia
to shoulder the burden of Afghanistan's problems in a new way.

While the number of members speaking against the war in this place is small, the number of people
out there concerned about the war is huge. In other words, numerous members are prepared to sit
there behind your party's policy at the expense of genuinely representing the views of your
constituents, and that is a shocking breakdown of democracy. Some things should be above party
discipline and this is one of them.

There may be the odd exception in the days ahead, but breaking party ranks in this so-called new
paradigm is not something encouraged by the leadership of the major parties, no matter what the
electorate might be thinking on this issue or any other. So for now, these are the only voices of
dissent in the Parliament.

Yesterday the Prime Minister was about us still waging war in Afghanistan in Prime Minister was
talking about us Afghanistan in 10 years' time. That was an extraordinary admission of the
difficulties we've gone and got ourselves into and entirely inconsistent with our national

If Coalition Coalition troops are there for another decade, a whole generation of boys and girls
will have grown up under occupation and we must expect all the consequences that may flow from

At a news conference, Julia Gillard was repeatedly asked to explain exactly what she meant in her
speech to the House yesterday when have to stay when she have to stay engaged in Afghanistan in
some form for at least another decade. This is all she could offer.

I have said that we will be engaged until the end of this decade at least, with training and
support and civilian works, aid and development works and then I have said I believe it will be the
work of a generation of Afghans to build democracy.

Is that engagement till the end of the decade in your mind still military engagement or is it other
forms of engagement, civilian?

I think we can conceptualise that there would be some overwatch functions for a period of time and
then we could conceptualise that there would be continued support for training over a period of

The Prime Minister was clearly at pains not to be too specific, nor was she interested in Adam
Bandt's proposed bill to allow the Parliament to vote on any Government decision to go to war.

The Greens hope that this debate can be a step towards the passage of our bill which will mean will
mean once and for all in the future the Australian people through their representatives will have a
say in going to war.

No matter what side side of this debate members on, it's the deaths of 21 Australian soldiers in
Afghanistan that brings out all the emotion, and today was no exception, as Andrew Wilkie - a
former army man himself - read out all the names of those who died.

Nathan Bewes, Jason Brown, Grant Kirby, Thomas Dale and Jared and Jared MacKinney. You died serving
your country and I salute you. You died serving your country and I salute you, may you rest in
peace, and may my new colleagues in this place see the sense in ending this now before too many
more young Australians are sent to their deaths. Thank you.

While several hours will be set aside for this debate until it's run its course, the business its
course, the business of does the politics. Amid reports Julia Gillard has offered Andrew Wilkie the
former whistleblower on the Iraq war a plum spot to sit on the joint parliamentary committee on
intelligence and security. There's growing consternation in Coalition ranks this may cost them a
seat. Politics, too, over the introduction of a bill today to separate the wholesale and retail
arms of Telstra.

So we are urging the Opposition today to not delay this bill. With effectively restructure the this
legislation we effectively restructure the industry to build the National Broadband Network to
deliver broadband services to all Australians at a uniform wholesale price.

So let's recognise the recognise the Opposition's stunts for exactly what they are. They are
willfully delaying millions of Australians from getting a fairer deal on broadband and
telecommunication services.

I just want to reject comprehensively the suggestion or the allegation from Senator endeavouring to
block or delay or frustrate the construction of the northbound n. That is continuing.

The bill has lapsed in the Senate for months, with the Opposition refusing to support it in its
entirety and for now that remains the case, as the new Communications Spokesman says he'll take his