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Australia's defence cut targets to contribute economic surplus

05-04-2012 15:06 BJT

CANBERRA, May 4 (Xinhua) -- Australian Defence Minister Stephen Smith said Friday the spending cut targets to contribute 2012/13 surplus of national economy.

The Australian's (national newspaper) foreign editor Greg Sheridan compared the cut to the fall of Saigon at the end of the Vietnam War.

Smith on Friday said he was bemused by Sheridan's analysis which was "shrill" and "out of the ball park". "I just think it's a nonsense statement."

Smith said he doesn't think there are people circling Australia thinking about an invasion by 2028. "The (Defence) White Paper 2009 makes it clear there's no foreseeable threat to Australia in terms of an attack."

The minister also acknowledge Defence would experience " difficult but manageable times" as a result of Tuesday's budget.

"We believe that we have ring-fenced the core capability that we need and the core contributions and obligations that we have at the moment so far as our field operations are concerned." He said.

The Australian federal government is due to deliver 2012/13 budget next Tuesday. The defence department's four-billion-dollar cut in the budget ending weeks of speculation about the department 's contribution to the 2012/13 surplus.

Editor:Wang Lingfei |Source: Xinhua

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