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Notice given 6 February 2003

Senator Brown: To ask the Ministers listed below (Question Nos 1151-1152)—

(1) Was Australia requested to contribute funds to an appeal by the United Nations in December 2002 for US $37 million to prepare for a possible humanitarian crisis in Iraq.

(2) (a) What contribution has Australia made to ‘pre-positioning’ humanitarian aid in case of a war in Iraq; and (b) how much has it contributed to the $37 million requested.

(3) What does the Minister estimate the humanitarian requirements for Iraq to be in the case of war.

(4) (a) What humanitarian aid will Australia provide in case of a war in Iraq; (b) what will be the value; (c) what form will the aid take; and (d) how will it be delivered.

(5) (a) What communications has the Minister had with the United States of America and Britain relating to humanitarian issues in the event of war; (b) when were these discussion; and (c) what was the substance of the discussions.

1151 Minister representing the Minister for Foreign Affairs

1152 Minister representing the Minister for Foreign Affairs

1153  Senator Tierney: To ask the Special Minister of State—How much was spent in parliamentary printing entitlements in the electorate of Paterson, for the following parliamentary terms: (a) 1993-96; (b) 1996-98; (c) 1998-2001; and (d) 2001 to present.

1154  Senator Allison: To ask the Minister for Defence—

(1) Can the Government confirm the following reports: (a) that President Bush has been quoted as saying the United States (US) Administration will use nuclear weapons ‘if necessary’; (b) that on 28 January American Nuclear weapons analyst, William Arkin, Senior Fellow at the Centre for Strategic Education at the Johns Hopkins University, was reported as saying the US Strategic Command is compiling potential target lists with planning focussed on roles for nuclear weapons on underground facilities and to stop chemical or biological attack; and (c) that when asked about the report, White House spokesperson, Ari Fleischer said that all military options are available.

(2) Can details be provided on what advice the Government has been given by the US Administration about such proposals to use nuclear weapons in any attack on Iraq.

(3) Given that the US STRATCOM review says, ‘nuclear weapons could be employed against targets able to withstand non-nuclear attack’: (a) what advice has the Government been given by the US Administration about the proposed use of these so-called ‘bunker busters’; and (b) can details be provided.

(4) Which, if any, of the following circumstances would cause Australia to decline to send or withdraw troops from combat in Iraq: (a) use by the US Administration of depleted uranium in warheads; (b) use of nuclear ‘bunker busters’; (c) use of other nuclear weapons; and (d) use of nuclear weapons in retaliation against Iraqi use of chemical or biological weapons.

(5) If no decision has yet been made on the above, when, and by what process, will a decision be made.

(6) (a) What advice has the Government received from the US Administration about a reported increase in US nuclear capability; if no advice has been received, what analysis has the Government done of this increase in nuclear capability.

(7) Given that the US Administration announced in January 2003 that it intended to shatter Iraq ‘physically, emotionally and psychologically’ using 800 cruise missiles in 2 days - twice the number launched during the 40 days of the Gulf War in 1991: (a) has the US Administration advised the Government if these missiles will carry depleted uranium; if so, what would be the total quantity of depleted uranium so used; (b) has the US Administration advised the Government which cities would be targeted by these 800 cruise missiles; and (c) what civilian casualties could be expected in each city.

(8) With reference to the Prime Minister’s statement on 30 January 2003 that, ‘Australia doesn’t have chemical or biological or nuclear weapons and we don’t want them. We don’t have them, and we don’t think countries, other than those authorised by international agreement should have them’: what concerns has the Government expressed about the spread of nuclear weapons to Israel.

(9) What steps does the Australian Government propose to take to disarm Israel of nuclear weapons.

(10) What analysis has the Government prepared of the implications for world peace of the pre-emptive use of nuclear weapons in an attack on Iraq.

(11) What analysis has the Government prepared of the implications for world peace and progress on international treaties such as the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty of the US move to group nuclear weapons with conventional weaponry.