Acting Minister for Defence Senator George Brandis - Media Statement - State Mine Fire Investigation

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Senator the Hon David Johnston

Minister for Defence

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23 October 2013

I have seen reports that the State Mine fire near Lithgow may have been caused by live ordnance exercises on Marangaroo Defence Range on Wednesday 16 October 2013.

Last night I spoke to the Acting Chief of the Defence Force, Air Marshal Mark Binskin, about the matter.

The Australian Government and the Australian Defence Force take this issue very seriously and continue to fully cooperate with the New South Wales authorities, including the New South Wales Police, who are investigating the fire.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the people of New South Wales who have been affected by these devastating fires and the Australian Government is doing everything it can to help the New South Wales authorities bring the fires under control.

Media contacts:

Tracy Heffernan (Senator Brandis' office): 0477 722 189

Defence Media Operations: (02) 6127 1999

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