16 September 2014
A statement on AFP withdrawal from Hobart Airport
The Independent Member for Denison, Andrew Wilkie, discussed new revelations about the withdrawal of the Australian Federal Police from Hobart Airport.
“The consequences of the withdrawal of the Australian Federal Police from Hobart Airport are even worse than we first feared,” Mr Wilkie said.
“I have learned that the two AFP detection dogs have already gone. One detected drugs and cash, and the other detected explosives.
“And I have also learned that the Hobart-based AFP officers who are being removed were in the practise of inspecting Launceston Airport on a weekly basis, visits that will obviously no longer be possible.
“In other words, Hobart Airport will be the only capital city airport without a permanent AFP presence and Hobart, and Tasmania more broadly, will be left without a range of law enforcement capabilities and advice.
“Not only does the withdrawal of the AFP make Hobart Airport vulnerable to innovative home-grown terrorists looking for a symbolic and soft target, it also makes the whole of the State more vulnerable to a range of other criminal activities.
“I call again on the Federal Government to urgently review this matter.
“If the Government is fair dinkum about the increased terror threat then it needs to maintain a permanent AFP presence at Hobart Airport.”
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