The ALP has vowed to scrap any “bodgy” (sic) naval deals in the face of increasing speculation that the Abbott government may look to Japan to build Australia’s new submarine fleet.
Opposition leader Bill Shorten says the Coalition is “playing with fire” by “contracting out the defence of Australia”, The SMH reported.
Shorten conjured up memories of World War II when describing the Abbott Government’s commitment to bridging the gap and forming deeper military ties with Japan.
“In the Second World War, 366 merchant ships were sunk off Australia,” he said.
He vowed to cancel the the suggested naval project to purchase 12 large submarines from Japan if Labor wins the next federal election.
“Let me put on the record, Labor, if elected, will build submarines in Australia, unequivocally,” Shorten said.
“They are contracting out the defence of Australia, they are fighting for jobs in foreign countries, not our own, and … in uncertain times, they are playing with fire with our national security.”
It is understood no contract to buy Japanese submarines has been formally authorised.
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