Assistant Minister for Defence - Inquiry into recognition for Far East Prisoners of War

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The Hon Darren Chester MP

Assistant Minister for Defence

Media contact
  • Brie Colley (Mr Chester’s office) (02) 6277 4029
  • James Cannon (Tribunal) 0433 884 238
  • Defence Media (02) 6127 1999

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13 November 2015

The independent Defence Honours and Awards Appeals Tribunal will conduct an inquiry into recognition of Australian personnel who served during the Second World War, were Far East Prisoners of War, and were killed while escaping or following recapture, Assistant Minister for Defence, Darren Chester, announced today.

In conducting this Inquiry the Tribunal has 28 names to initially review against the policy, adopted by Australia in 1944, and outlined in previous inquiries conducted by the Tribunal. Where the 1944 policy does not cover all circumstances of the actions of Prisoners of War, the Tribunal will need to determine whether these actions fit within the scope of the policy. The Tribunal will consult with relevant experts during the Inquiry.

Mr Chester said public hearings would be conducted during the course of the Inquiry.

”I am pleased to announce that as part of this Inquiry, the Tribunal will also receive submissions from members of the public nominating other Defence Force members who may be worthy of consideration of recognition as Far East Prisoners of War who were killed while escaping or following recapture.

”These submissions will be considered within this Inquiry, but it is important that the submissions are supported by appropriate documentation, not just anecdotal evidence,” Mr Chester said.

The Inquiry will commence shortly. The Terms of Reference for the Inquiry and guidance on how to make a submission will be made available on the Tribunal’s website at

Details about the Tribunal are also available on this site.

Media contacts:

Brie Colley (Assistant Minister’s Office) 0475 962 448

Defence Media (02) 6127 1999

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