Cairns host global WMD prevention exercise

Raising of the Special Operations Engineer Regiment

The Australian Government has joined forces with countries from around the world to conduct a four-day exercise in Far North Queensland.

The Exercise Pacific Protector is a four-day workshop designed to assist in the prevention of the illicit trade of ‘weapons of mass destruction.’

The operations comes as part of Australia’s International commitment to the Proliferation Security Initiative and identify security threats in the Indo-Pacific region.

‘This is an exercise where Countries from around the region get together to practice procedures to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction,’ Joint Operations Command Steven Hanrahan told Sky News.

Globally 105 countries are involved in the Proliferation Security Initiative, launched in 2003 by US President George W Bush.

In a statement Defence Minister Marise Payne said it’s part of the nation’s international commitment and believes security in the Indo-Pacific region must be heightened in light of North Korea’s sixth nuclear test to date.

‘We need look no further than North Korea’s nuclear ballistic missile programs to understand the consequences of failing to prevent proliferation activities.’

‘Pyongyang’s provocative and dangerous behaviour in continuing to test nuclear weapons only serves to heighten our sense of purpose in stopping proliferation.’. Source.