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Ministerial comment on private submission to parliamentary sub-committee on foreign affairs and defence



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THURSDAY, APRIL 19, 1979. NO. 74/79

MINISTERIAL COMMENT ON PRIVATE SUBMISSION TO

PARLIAMENTARY SUBCOMMITTEE ON FOREIGN AFFAIRS AND DEFENCE

The Minister for Defence, Mr D. J. Killen, today-

referred to recent press articles commenting on the substance

of a private submission to a sub-committee of the Joint

Parliamentary Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defence.

Mr Killen said it was scandalous that Mr Samuel

should report in "The Bulletin" that "the department has so

far suppressed" a submission to the sub-committee by

Mr Berthelsen. The Department of Defence has not seen a

copy of Mr Berthelsen's submission, which is a private

document of the sub-committee. Nor has the Department been

asked to comment on the substance of the submission to the

Parliamentary sub—committee.

It remains to be seen whether the sub-committee

considers the submission justifies any further attention.

Mr Killen said; " I do not intend to compound any

breach of Parliamentary privilege which may"have been

committed.

"However from the published reports, the submission

appears to be a mixture of nonsense, extravagance, half­

truths and humbug".

Mr Berthelsen is not a recognised expert in the

fields of communications engineering or computing. After

seventeen months experience in the communications area of

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Defence, he left to become a clerk in the Auditor-General1s

Department.

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Further Inquiries: Mr Bruce Davis 65 2999 (office hours)

82 2270 (after hours)

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