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Question to Prime Minister on RAAF firefighting squadrons



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25 November 2019

MEDIA ALERT: QUESTION TO PRIME MINISTER ON RAAF FIREFIGHTING SQUADRONS

Independent Member for Clark, Andrew Wilkie, will ask the Prime Minister the following in Question Time today. Please check against delivery. (Sometimes the second crossbench question does not get asked).

“Prime Minister, our access to foreign heavy firefighting aircraft is now problematic as the northern and southern hemisphere fire seasons overlap due to climate change, while domestic resources are stretched to fight simultaneous fires across Australia.

“Despite this my repeated requests for a specialised RAAF firefighting squadron have been dismissed by Government every time.

“The reality is that aid to the civil community is an accepted use of ADF assets, and existing RAAF aircraft like the C17 Globemaster, C130 Hercules and C27 Spartan could all deploy roll-on roll-off firefighting packs.

“Prime Minister, as the country confronts a shocking bushfire season, will you direct Defence to establish a heavy firefighting aircraft capability?”

WHEN: Approximately 3:00pm TODAY 25 November 2019 WHERE: House of Representatives (watch live at https://www.aph.gov.au/news_and_events/watch_parliament)

For more information: 0427 291 785

Authorised by Andrew Wilkie MP 188 Collins St Hobart