Monday, 11 September 2023
Australian Secret Intelligence Service; Order for the Production of Documents
That there be laid on the table by the Minister for Foreign Affairs, by no later than 4.30 pm on 14 September 2023:
(b) all diplomatic cables between the ASIS station in Santiago and the office of the Minister for Foreign Affairs;
(c) all diplomatic cables between the ASIS station in Santiago and the office of the Prime Minister;
(d) post-operations reports from ASIS activities in Santiago between 1970 and 1973; and
(e) all communications between the ASIS agent who remained in Chile following the closure of the station and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, as de-identified documents.
Australia stands with the people of Chile in commemorating the tragedy of Chile's military coup and recognising the widespread suffering, torture, enforced disappearances and human rights abuses that occurred during Chile's brutal, 17-year dictatorship. We also recognise the significant contributions made by the Chilean diaspora in Australia. This motion seeks documents that the Minister for Foreign Affairs has been advised would not be in the public interest to release, on the basis that doing so could reasonably be expected to prejudice Australia's national security, defence or international relations.
There is a process under the Archives Act 1993 for access to Commonwealth records, and whether records will be made available to the public is a decision for the Director-General of the National Archives. The government will not be supporting the motion moved by Senator Steele-John.