The Hon. Alexander Downer, MP
The Hon. Alexander Downer, MP
 FORMER MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS, AUSTRALIA

Joint Media Release

Senator The Hon Robert Hill
Minister for Defence
Leader of the Government in the Senate

The Hon Alexander Downer
Minister for Foreign Affairs

16 November 2005

Australia-United States Ministerial Consultations 2005

The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Alexander Downer, and the Minister for Defence, Robert Hill, today announced that Australia will host the Australia-United States Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN) in Adelaide on 17 - 18 November 2005.

United States Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld, and Deputy Secretary of State, Robert Zoellick, will lead the US delegation to the Consultations. The Chief of the Australian Defence Force, Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston, will be joined by the Commander, US Pacific Command, Admiral William Fallon.

Hosted alternately by Australia and the United States, AUSMIN is the key forum under the ANZUS alliance for bilateral consultations on regional and global security matters. This year's meeting will mark the 20th anniversary of the first AUSMIN talks which were held in Canberra in 1985.

The Consultations bear witness to the remarkably close and productive relationship on security and foreign policy between the two countries.

AUSMIN 2005 will be a high-level opportunity for Australia to continue close coordination with the United States in the war against terrorism, including our shared commitment to Afghanistan. Terrorism and proliferation challenges will be a focus of the regional discussion. Both sides will review progress in Iraq.

The Consultations are also important for alliance development. We look forward to reviewing our defence relationship and discussing proposals to strengthen it further.

We are pleased to be welcoming the US guests to our home town of Adelaide.

Inquiries:  Chris Kenny (Mr Downer's office) 02 62777 500 - Sascha Meldrum (Senator Hill's office) 02 6277 7800


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