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Tuesday, 3 December 1985
Page: 2783


Senator KILGARIFF —Is the Minister representing the Minister for Foreign Affairs aware of a report in the Bulletin of 26 November entitled `Peaceniks Silent as Soviets Test Super Missiles in the Pacific' in which Leslie Kemeny, a senior lecturer at the School of Nuclear Engineering at the University of New South Wales, gave details of Soviet nuclear weapon testing confirmed by the Department of Defence and which was carried out on 10 and 11 July, 8 and 9 August, and 6, 17, 18 and 25 December, 1984, near Midway Island, and earlier tests carried out in the vicinity of the Cook Islands? In view of the Federal Government's condemnation of the recent French nuclear tests at Mururoa, has the Government similarly condemned the Soviet testing? If not, will the Government now publicly condemn the Soviet testing?


Senator GARETH EVANS —I would need more authority than a Bulletin article by Mr Kemeny or anyone else to condemn anything.


Senator Kilgariff —He quoted the Department of Defence.


Senator GARETH EVANS —He may well have quoted the Department of Defence.


Senator Durack —Are you saying that the Russians are not testing in the Pacific?


Senator GARETH EVANS —I have some recollection of seeing the Bulletin article in question. I have no knowledge whatsoever of the facts on which that article purported to be based. I will refer the question immediately to the Minister for Foreign Affairs and see what response he cares to make.