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Thursday, 7 December 2017
Page: 10106


Senator McGRATH (QueenslandAssistant Minister to the Prime Minister) (15:52): I seek leave to make a short statement.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT: Leave is granted for one minute.

Senator McGRATH: The government supports the motion in its original form. However, we do not support this amendment. Australian intelligence agencies already have comprehensive independent oversight of their operations through the Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security and of their legislation through the Independent National Security Legislation Monitor. These oversight mechanisms are being enhanced through the coalition government's response to the independent intelligence review and home affairs implementation. It is the government's view that adding a duplicating layer of operational oversight by a parliamentary committee would only increase the potential for the politicisation of our intelligence agencies, not diminish it.