Australia Apologizes for Abuse in Military

Posted November 26th, 2012 at 1:55 am (UTC-5)
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Australia's government has apologized to hundreds of victims of abuse within the military, clearing the way for victims to receive compensation.

In an address to parliament Monday, Defense Minister Stephen Smith acknowledged that, since the early 1950s soldiers, sailors and members of the air force had suffered abuse, often by superiors, under the excuse of toughening up younger recruits.

In his statement, Smith lashed out at senior military figures who turned a blind eye to abuse.

Smith says an independent task force will examine specific allegations of sexual, physical, or mental abuse and rule on compensation of up to $52,000 for victims. It will also refer cases to police or the military justice system if there is evidence of a crime.